Year End Contributions
Charitable contributions must be claimed in the year in which they were delivered. One exception is a check that is mailed to a charity. It is deductible in the year the envelope is postmarked – if the postmark is 2013, even if it is received early in the first week of January 2014. If a check is received in the mail in the first week of January 2014 and is postmarked 2013, that check shall be included in the 2013 contribution statement.
However, a member who contributes a personal check to the church in an offering after Sunday,January 1, 2014 cannot claim a 2013 deduction – even if the check is backdated. The church must report such a check on the member’s 2014contribution statement. The same would be true even if the member actually wrote the check in2013 but did not deliver it to the church until the first worship service in 2014.
As noted above, the critical factor is the date of deliver except the case of checks that are postmarked but not deliver in 2013.