01 February 2018

Learn how to claim your charity tax refund now

Ruth explains how to get 1/3 of your donations back from the IRD


I’m Ruth and I work in the Donor Services Team at ChildFund New Zealand. With the end of the financial year soon approaching, I wanted to give you this great little tip.

Did you know that if you’ve made a charitable donation to ChildFund New Zealand (or any other charity) within the past four years, you might be able to claim a tax credit? You can do this if you:

  • have made a donation of $5 or more to an approved donee organisation (such as ChildFund New Zealand) where there is no linked benefit to you or your family;
  • earned taxable income, including: a salary, NZ Super, benefit, interest, dividends and/or self-employed income for the year you’re claiming for;
  • are an individual, not a partnership, trust or company; and
  • were a New Zealand resident at any time during that tax year.

I want you to know that ChildFund New Zealand is registered with the New Zealand Government’s Department of Internal Affairs - Charities (formerly Charities Commission) as a charitable entity (CC10081). This means you can claim a third of your donations to ChildFund New Zealand from the IRD. You need to complete the pesky tax form IR526 for the appropriate year (forms are annoying, I know, but this should only take a few minutes). Click to get the correct form for 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. The 2018 form should be available here after 31 March 2018, so keep an eye out!

The maximum tax credits you can claim are:

  • 33.333% of your taxable income, OR
  • 33.333% of the total donations you’ve made

This means, if you donated $100 to ChildFund New Zealand, $100 of that donation supports our work. The New Zealand Government will give the $33.33 tax credit refund to you at the end of the financial year (woo hoo!), so you don’t need to worry as it’s not coming out of the work we do.

You can even donate your tax refund back to ChildFund New Zealand and further your support! That little bit extra always helps.

I know that the people of New Zealand are a very generous lot, it’s estimated that we donate around $3 billion to charities every year! However, many of us are forgetting to claim this tax credit back. Only around 1/3 of people are claiming a rebate, but if more people claimed, then this money wouldn’t be sitting with the IRD and instead could be donated back to the charities you support – such as ChildFund. Claiming a rebate means you can give more and increases the impact of your donation to your chosen charity.

Many people don’t claim their tax credit back for the following reasons:

  • it’s just another form to fill out
  • the amount they donated originally was too small to warrant doing so
  • they can’t be bothered
  • it's too much hassle
  • it's contrary to the act of donating
  • they didn’t know they could claim a tax rebate

This shouldn’t be the case. Taking 10 minutes out of your day to fill out this form and send it back to the IRD, no matter the amount you’ve donated is something you should do every year. Donating the refund back to your supported charity like ChildFund will be very much appreciated.

Before you do this, you will need receipts to prove that you made a donation to ChildFund New Zealand or any other charity. You’ll receive your 2018 tax receipt for your donations to ChildFund soon after the 31st of March. However, if you’d like your receipts for the 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 tax years then please call myself or Vanessa at 0800 808 822 and we will be happy to send them to you as quickly as possible.

We can also help you to donate the refund back to ChildFund New Zealand once it’s been deposited into your bank account. Simply give us a ring at the number above – we’d love to chat!

ChildFund New Zealand really appreciates you taking the time and effort to claim your tax credit from the IRD. Donating this refund back to support our work gives us more resources to make long-term, positive change and to enable children and youth thrive throughout the world.


Learn how to claim your charity tax refund now

If you've made a charitable donation of $5 or more in the last 4 years you can claim 1/3 of it back!

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