GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — On the eve of Giving Tuesday, you may want to take into consideration some tips to make sure your donation is going to a legitimate place.
Lisa Frohnapfel from the Better Business Bureau shares tips on how to avoid being scammed and really help those that need it.
KNOW WHO YOU’RE GIVING TO
There will be many options and opportunities to donate on Giving Tuesday, but the BBB’s best suggestion is to find out more about a charity before you contribute.
Charities can demonstrate they are trustworthy by agreeing to in-depth evaluations in relation to the BBB Standards for Charity Accountability. Get free access to charity reports by visiting Give.org to find out if an organization is BBB Accredited (i.e., meets all 20 BBB Charity Standards.)
BE CAUTIOUS ABOUT NAME CONFUSION
When charities seek support for the same cause, the names can sometimes appear similar. Before you give, be sure you have the exact name of the charity to avoid a case of mistaken identity.
DON’T BE PRESSURED TO ACT
What organization you choose to support, and at what level, is your decision to make. Don’t let a caller or email pressure your decision. Instead, take your time and make sure you are comfortable with your decision.
Some charities use third parties to solicit funds. Those companies often take a portion of the donations collected. Instead, contact the charity and give your donation to them directly. This will ensure the charity keeps a larger share of the funds.
CONSIDER TAX-EXEMPT STATUS
There are over 1 million organizations that have applied for and received charitable tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. This means these groups are eligible to receive gifts that are deductible as charitable donations. Other 501(c) categories may not have the same tax-deduction options for donors.
If you would like more information about how to avoid scams go to the BBB’s website.