This post was written by Larry Blair.
The United States Tax Court has again sided with the Internal Revenue Service in disallowing a charitable contribution because there was no contemporaneous written acknowledgement from the recipient at the time of the contribution.
The $64 million donation was a façade easement to a historic trust. There was no contemporaneous written acknowledgement from the donee organization, as required by Code Section 170(f)(8)(A). These requirements must be met in order to substantiate any contribution of $250 or more. (15th West 17th Street LLC v. Commissioner, 147 T.C. No. 19.)
A critical element is the requirement that the contemporaneous written acknowledgement must state whether the donee provided the donor with any goods or services in exchange for the gift.