Car Donation FAQs
1) What are the benefits of donating my car to WMHT?
WMHT 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.
2) Does WMHT handle everything for me?
WMHT is partnered with a company called CARS (Charitable Auto Resources, Inc.) based in San Diego California. WMHT and CARS have a contractual agreement to process all vehicle donations. CARS is owned and operated by a non-profit social service agency that works with many public broadcasting stations and other non profit organizations across the country in outsourcing their vehicle donation program. WMHT screened CARS thoroughly for customer service policies and references and selected them among many organizations. They have been chosen because of their expertise, and all calls and issues will ultimately be referred to CARS.
3) Do you only accept cars for donation?
Many types of motor vehicles are accepted including boats, motorcycles, trucks, and cars. If you are uncertain as to whether or not your vehicle is eligible, please contact the WMHT vehicle donation program toll free at 866-964-8409.
4) What does WMHT do with donated vehicles?
The vehicles are sold at a private auction. The funds from vehicle donations are used by WMHT to support and produce quality educational and entertainment programs as well as to support our outreach efforts in our community.
5) Does my car have to be running to qualify for donation?
In some cases we can take your car, running or not. However, it must have an engine and be tow–able. Call our customer service representative to find out if your vehicle qualifies.
6) What paperwork do I need?
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.)
7) What if I lost the title?
You will need to get a duplicate title and call 866-964-8409 when you have received it. We cannot pick up your vehicle if you do not have the title.
8) What if my car won’t pass the state inspection?
We can accept vehicles without a state inspection sticker or current registration as long as there is a clear title.
9) Do I need a smog certificate in order to donate my car?
For states that require smog certificates or safety inspections, you may donate your vehicle without these documents.
10) What if I receive legal notices?
In the rare event that you receive any notification of a lien sale, DMV actions, or other activity related to your donated vehicle, please contact us at 866-964-8409 immediately for assistance.
11) How does the new law effect my tax deduction?
Donors are no longer responsible for determining the deductible value of their donation. Instead, they will receive IRS Form 1098–C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes if the proceeds from the sale exceed $500, stating the amount of the gross proceeds from the sale of the donated vehicle. The amount listed on IRS Form 1098–C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes will be the gross proceeds of the deductible donation.
12) Will I get a tax receipt for my donation?
Yes, our driver will issue a receipt at the time of pick-up. This is not your final tax receipt unless the sale of your vehicle does not exceed $500. This initial acknowledgement will indicate your name as well as the year, make, model, and condition of the car you are donating. It will be your only receipt if your vehicle sells for less than $500.
13) What can I claim as a deduction?
According to the tax law effective January 1, 2005, if the claimed value of the donated vehicle exceeds $500, the taxpayer is limited to the gross proceeds of the sale.
An IRS Form 1098–C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes will be mailed to you within 30 days of the sale stating the amount of gross proceeds received from your car, provided your vehicle sold for more than $500. This will be your tax receipt for your charitable contribution.
14) How is the value determined on the vehicle donated?
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.
15) What if my car is valued over $5000?
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.
16) When is the latest time I can donate a vehicle to WMHT in any year and still qualify for a tax deduction for that calendar year?
Vehicle donations committed to WMHT by midnight of Dec. 31 are considered as donations for that year, even if the vehicle is picked up and sold in the following year.
17) How long will it take to pick up my vehicle?
18) Do I have to be with the vehicle at the time of pick up?
No. Special arrangements can be made by calling our representative.
19) Do I pay for the towing?
No, there is no charge to you for the towing.
20) I donated my vehicle several weeks ago and I have not heard what it sold for. How can I find out? I need the information for my tax return.
Call our representatives at 866-964-8409 and they will inform you where your vehicle is in the selling process. Keep in mind that the entire auction process and paperwork completion could take several weeks. But a phone call to our representatives will provide you the information you need, especially at tax time.