Frequently Asked Questions
WGBH benefits by receiving a cash donation to fund our new and existing programs and increase community awareness through local events.
You benefit by being able to reduce your taxable income when taxes are itemized. Plus you avoid the costs associated with selling your car. No need to pay for advertising, no loss of privacy and possible security risk, and no need to pay for vehicle registration, insurance, and repairs to keep your car in running condition while you wait for a buyer.
Many types of motor vehicles are accepted including boats, motorcycles, trucks, and cars.
The vehicles are sold at a private auction. The funds from vehicle donations are used by WGBH to support and produce quality educational and entertainment programs as well as to support our outreach efforts in our community.
In most cases we can take your car, running or not. However, it must have an engine and be towable.
The only paperwork needed is a signed, clear title. Have your title with you when you call in your donation. (Please note: a clear title indicates the title is in the name of the donor without a lien.)
You will need to get a duplicate title and call us when you have received it. We cannot pick up your vehicle if you do not have the title. Log onto Mass.gov or call 617-351-4500 for information on how to obtain a duplicate title in Massachusetts, or contact your state registry of motor vehicles department. Unfortunately WGBH cannot help you in this process.
We can accept vehicles without a state inspection sticker or current registration as long as there is a clear title.
For states that require smog certificates or safety inspections, you may donate your vehicle without these documents.
If you itemize your tax return you may deduct the sale value of your donated vehicle or the fair market value up to $500, whichever is greater. If sold over $500.00 your SSN will be required. You can find more information on charitable vehicle donation tax deductions at: IRS.gov. Since each donor’s tax situation is different we recommend that you consult your tax professional.
A receipt will be sent to you approximately 5 days after your vehicle has been picked up. If you itemize your taxes, you may be able to deduct the fair market value of your vehicle up to $500, or the actual selling price, whichever is greater. If your vehicle sells for more than $500, we are required by IRS law to report your donation using your tax identification number. You will be receiving correspondence from us requesting this information if needed, within 30 days from when your donated vehicle sells.
The value is determined by the gross proceeds raised from the sale of the donated vehicle. You no longer have the burden of determining the value yourself.
WGBH has additional paperwork in reporting the gross proceeds raised from the sale of the vehicle to the donor and IRS. The process of obtaining the cash donation from the vehicle remains the same.
Effective January 1, 2005, you are no longer required to have vehicles appraised. The value you may claim will be the amount of gross proceeds received from your vehicle.
No, most of the time you do not need to be present when your vehicle is towed.
No, there is no charge to you for the towing.
Depending on your location, we will either set the pickup date and window of time on the donation call, or the auction facility will call you back to arrange a date with you.
You will become a member at the Individual Membership level after your car is sold at auction and proceeds are credited to WGBH. Your membership will be a one-year membership. If you are a WGBH member at the time your car is sold at auction your membership will be extended for one year. It will take approximately six weeks to process your membership from the time you receive notice that your car has sold at auction. See Membership Benefits.
You should receive your member card and benefits package approximately six weeks after you have been notified that your vehicle sold at auction.
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