How to Donate a Car To Charity in California

If you are looking for information on how to donate your car to charity in the state of California you’re in luck – the car donation process is relatively simple.  All you really need to do is call the charity and someone from the charity of your choice will be over to pick-up your vehicle.  The hardest part is not really the donation process, but actually deciding in which charity in California you want to donate your car to.

Steps To Take When Donating Your Car

  1. Research the charity or organization
  2. Check with the IRS to determine whether or not you will receive a tax benefit from the donation of your car.
  3. Look up the value of your car
  4. Verify with the IRS or recipient whether or not you have any additional responsibilities in the process

You may also want to consider the following

  • How your car will be used
  • If they plan on selling the car, where will the money go?
  • Which programs or services the charity will receive

IRS Tax Write-Offs

The IRS has recently clamped down on the maximum you can write-off on a car you donate.  You can no longer use the vehicle’s full / blue book value for the tax deduction.  Instead you can now only claim the amount for which it is sold on the market.  As always, since IRS and tax rules are constantly  changing, be sure to check with your tax professional ahead of time.

Motor Vehicle Department Donation Procedures to Follow When Donating Your Car in California

Donating your car is really close to the same process as if you were selling it to a private party:

  • Complete a title transfer
  • Cancel your registration
  • Complete a notice of transfer/release of liability form

Helpful Links

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