Tax Exemption, 501c3, and Answers to your Questions

img_1278Happy New Year!!  Welcome to 2017.  Thank you so much to each and every person who donated to the Alumni Fund and joined or renewed membership to the Alumni Association in 2016.  We are still waiting on our accountants for final figures, but the outpouring of support was tremendous.  Each and every dollar will be utilized to improve the student experience at the College of Medicine.

In early December, Dr. Sweeney and Dr. Parnes sent a letter out to people who had donated or were members prior to my arrival as your Executive Director, but who had not given to us since.

The positive response to this request was heart warming.  It also generated a number of questions.

Question 1: I heard you lost your 501c3 Tax Exempt Status, so I can’t get a tax deduction. Is this true?

Answer 1: The Alumni Association had their tax exempt status temporarily revoked in 2013.  It was fully restored prior to my arrival in March of 2015.  All donations to the Alumni Fund are tax deductible. 

Question2 : My letter thanking me for my Alumni Association Lifetime Membership did not include tax language.  Isn’t my membership tax deductible?

Answer 2: According to the IRS, membership payments or dues are not tax deductible.  Only donations to the Alumni Fund are tax deductible.  Your membership dues support our operating expenses and have associated benefits. 

Question 3: I paid my lifetime membership already, why do you keep asking me for money?

Answer 3: Thank you for paying a lifetime membership.  This important funding helps us to keep operating without spending money from the endowment on operating expenses.  Each membership paid covers a bit of our costs.  We currently still spend a small amount of donation money to cover operating expenses.  The money you donate is utilized for scholarships, research support, funding for student events, funding for student travel to conferences, and the other grants provided through the Alumni Fund.  Without donations, we cannot continue to support these programs at the level that we do now. 

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