April 1st between sessions of the LDS General Conference, KSL ran a 25 minute special about our Angel Family, The Mahes. Three years ago, 3 year old Elsie Mahe’s life was cut short after a tragic accident in the family home, but her legacy lives on. The Mahe family says while they didn’t receive their miracle for Elsie, there were many miracles from Elsie. Elsie’s organs were donated to save many lives, but the miracles go far beyond this. Her sparkle and spirit of a little girl have helped to spread faith, love and kindness across the globe. Check here for the beautiful, brave story of what the Mahe’s chose to do in the face of unspeakable sadness at the loss of their beautiful daughter.
Today the Naional Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho received the pen that Governor Butch Otter used to sign this bill!We are very grateful to our Idaho friends who saw this very important piece of legislation through.
Landmark Legislation Signed by Idaho Governor to Protect Living Organ Donors
Legislation is first of its kind in the nation
March 20, 2018
The National Kidney Foundation of Utah and Idaho is pleased to announce that Idaho Governor Butch Otter signed landmark legislation, S. 1302, to protect living organ donors from potential insurance discrimination. Too often living organ donors, who are healthier than the U.S. population at large, face insurance discrimination based solely on their
status as a living organ donor. “Today’s legislation in Idaho is the first of its kind in the nation designed to stop such discrimination. We hope soon every state in the nation follows suit. We were pleased to support the work of Marty Durand, an Idaho kidney transplant recipient and lawyer, who initiated the hearings on this bill” said Deen Vetterli, CEO National Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho.
The Idaho legislation, S. 1302, makes it unlawful to discriminate in the offering, issuance, cancellation, price or conditions of a policy, including the amount of coverage provided, based solely upon the status of the individual as a living organ
donor. The National Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho applauds Governor Otter for standing up for kidney patients, 100,000 of whom are waiting on a life-saving transplant right now.
The National Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho thanks Idaho State Senator Cherie Buckner-Webb for sponsoring the bill and owes a debt of gratitude to Committee leaders in the Senate and House for their efforts in support of organ donation. In 2017, nearly 20,000 Americans received a kidney transplant and one-third of these transplants were made possible by living donors.
Expanding living donation by removing barriers will help more people obtain a life-saving transplant. Organ donors undergo significant testing prior to being approved as a donor and must be in very good overall health before being permitted to donate. Most donors do not experience long term complications related to organ donation and therefore insurance discrimination is unjustified.
The Idaho legislation is modeled after The Living Donor Protection Act, introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives in March 2017 by Representative Jerry Nadler (D-NY) and Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler
Anyone who knows me knows, I grew up with no less than 8 cars on our 2 acre lot in East County San Diego. My Dad was a part time VW/Audi/Porsche mechanic. I grew up driving anything from a diesel Ford Ranchero, to a 1967 VW Bug to a 1978 Porche 930 Turbo Carrera. I spent most of my childhood getting dragged to wrecking yards and swap meets looking for certain car parts or tools. When my Dad died, we found ourselves weeping over his most prized possessions: a Suzuki Hyabusa engine and 50 gallon drum of nitro fuel. So I loved reading this story about Delwyn Friedl on KSL. He reminded me of my Dad, if my Dad had been a superhero who had a hook for a hand since he was 18. Delwyn was working at animal feed company when he was 18. He was trying to free up a jammed auger machine when his arm was pulled into the machinery. He lost the arm between the wrist and elbow. He has worked with the hook since 1957. While my Dad grew up in SoCal racing and crashing cars through the orange groves, Delwyn Friedl grew up in Utah racing and crashing cars on the Bonneville Salt Flats. While my Dad built his first race car at 14 out of an old Model A using a chevy 350 engine, In high school, Friedl built his own hot rod by putting a Hemi engine into a Model A Roadster. From there Mr. Friedly became a serious car builder/restorer. He estimates he has fixed up between 50 and 60 cars over the years. He still has about 10, including an original-built Buick (so says the title) powered by two Buick V-8 engines connected together. He said he’s driven it up to 120 miles per hour and it’s “real smooth.” He has built Model T’s, Model A’s, a salt flats racer and a ’60s convertible. His garage is full of beautiful cars, but none of them came in that way. He estimates he puts in about 1,000 hours on a typical restoration, and he does it all single-handed.
This makes me miss my Dad. His last car races were in Tecate and San Felipe Baja California in a modified mini Mustang he named the Baby Grand. I keep up the Kidney Kars program for the National Kidney Foundation of Utah and Idaho, because in 1991 I was the only person in Utah who had a background in fundraising, grant writing and also experience parting/recycling/reselling cars. Today, the Kidney Kars of Utah & Idaho car donation program at towKars.org is still one of the country’s largest car donation programs. I’m so proud to run the Kidney Kars program. I was so happy to be the daughter of someone who loved cars. It was fun. And to this day, my kids play a game on road trips called “what’s the year, make and model?” I’m pretty darn good at this game, if I do say so myself.
Anyway, as I get older myself my health, my knees my body has failed me in lots of way. Reading this story about Mr. Friedly inspired me. He lost his hand at 18 and didn’t let that deter him at all. If you love something, there is always a way to make it part of you. I hope to be as mentally and emotionally resourceful one day as a one armed mechanics, and the kidney patients who survive kidney disease in Utah and Idaho. Kidney Patients rely upon the services of the National Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho. So please donate your old car to www.towKars.org or (801) 226-5111. Kidney Kars donations are tax deductible and towing is free. So please,don’t just junk your old car! Help us to lighten the burden and improve the quality of life for Utah and Idaho kidney patients! Donate online at https://www.towKars.org
March is Kidney Month so the National Kidney Foundation of Utah and Idaho will be posting public service announcements throughout the month about kidney health and of course about donating an old car for a tax deduction to the Kidney Kars program. Because the funds raised from the Kidney Kars and www.towKars.org fund local kidney dialysis and transplant patient services its really a great way to combine both public information and a fundraising campaign. I love the memes that the National Kidney Foundation came up with to post on Facebook. Go ahead and scroll through them to get to know your Kidney better! After you do, don’t hestatate to call us at 1-800-Tow-Kars or visit us at www.towKars.org to donate your old car to keep the ball rolling on kidney health. You Kidney Kars donation lightens the burden and improves the quality of life for over 3,000 Utah and Idaho kidney patients! So #HeartYourKidneys everybody — it’s #MarchisKidneyMonth
Dear National Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho,
Thank you for your help with the debt I owed to Les Schwab Tire Center for fixing my car. I have to travel approximately 60 miles to dialysis 4 days a week for my dialysis treatments. The gas and car maintenance expenses have been very hard on me. I have been struggling to keep current with my bills since I started dialysis. I appreciate your help so very much. Every little bit helps. The Kidney Foundation of Utah is so wonderful to help those of us with kidney failure in such dire need. Thank you for your assistance. Once again, God bless you and thank you!
My son Derek passed away July 1, 2016. He was born with no kidney in 1995. Right after Derek was born he was life-flighted to Primary Children’s Hospital. Our journey of hospital stays, surgeries, tests, and constant poking started the day he was born. I gave Derek my kidney when he was 6, in 2001. Through the Foundation, my costs were paid to donate my kidney to Derek. Unfortunately, he lost that kidney to BK Virus and renal cell carcinoma in 2004. We waited nearly 5 years for another kidney. During that time, he required dialysis. As we live on the Utah/Wyoming border. Because there are no pediatric dialysis centers there, I was trained to be a dialysis tech. We did home hemo dialysis. In 2009 Derek received a kidney from a man that died in an accident. That kidney was a wonderful gift that gave Derek a normal life till his recent passing from leukemia. During those years The National Kidney Foundation of Utah & Idaho, through different programs, gave Derek a somewhat normal childhood. He loved Lagoon Day, going to Youth Transplant Kamp at Camp Kostopoulis, and going to IT school because of a Kidney Patient Scholarship provided by the Foundation. As the National Kidney Foundation of Utah does so much for families like ours, I wanted to give back somehow. When Derek passed away, I set up a memorial fund in his name for pediatric kidney patients. In all, $850 was donated in Derek’s name. If possible, I would like this money to be used to help another child have a “Normal” life. Whether it be for camp scholarships, Lagoon Day, expenses of a family in need with a child who has kidney failure. God bless. Thank you. Kali B.
It’s easy to donate a car to charity if all you want to do is get rid of it. Simply call a charity that accepts old vehicles, and it will tow your heap away.
If you want to maximize the benefits for both the charity and yourself, however, it’s more complicated. Until 2005, it was easy for taxpayers to deduct the entire “fair market value” of a donated vehicle from their taxable income, reducing the taxes they’d have to pay to the Internal Revenue Service. (The IRS defines fair market value as “the price a willing buyer would pay and a willing seller would accept for the vehicle, when neither party is compelled to buy or sell and both parties have reasonable knowledge of the relevant facts.”)
Allowing taxpayers to deduct the full fair market value for all those donated vehicles cost the IRS a lot of dollars, however, so the agency tightened the rules. Today, you can only deduct a vehicle’s fair market value under very specific conditions. We’re going to walk you through those conditions, with the usual proviso that you should discuss these issues with your tax preparer before you act. Also note that if your state or locality also levies income taxes, other rules may also apply.
You Must Itemize Your Return
If you want to claim fair market value for your car donation to reduce your federal income taxes, you must itemize deductions, says Twila D. Midwood, an enrolled agent based in Rockledge, Florida. An enrolled agent is a tax expert who can represent clients before the IRS.
If you’ve always filed 1040EZ tax returns and you plan to keep filing them, you won’t be able to deduct any amount for the car donation. You can file a regular 1040 tax form and itemize, even if the donated auto is your only deduction. That’s usually not the best choice, however, unless you like paying a lot more taxes to the IRS than you must.
“For tax purposes, because a donation is a deduction from your income, the tax benefit relates to your tax bracket,” Midwood says. “It’s not a dollar-for-dollar item.”
Here’s the math: Suppose you are in the 28 percent tax bracket. Your donated car’s value, and thus the deduction, is $1,000. “The $1,000 deduction will save you $280,” Midwood says. If you’re in the 15 percent tax bracket and you donate a car worth $1,000, it will only reduce your taxes by $150.
If instead you take the standard deduction, which in 2012 was $5,950 for a single individual or $11,900 for a married couple filing together, you save thousands of dollars over filing an itemized return only for the purposes of detailing your car donation.
The only way that donating a car nets you any tax benefit is if you have many deductions, and if their total sum, including the car, exceeds your standard deduction.
The Charity Must Qualify
Your city councilman’s campaign organization and your hobby club may be nonprofit organizations, but donating a car to them won’t give you any tax benefits. Only “qualified” charities can provide those for you. A qualified charity is one that has been approved by the IRS as an “exempt-status” or 501(c)(3) organization, Midwood says. Most organizations will state in their advertising or receipts that they’re a 501(c)(3) if indeed they are one, she says. “If you’re not sure, ask.”
Religious organizations are a special case. They do count as qualified organizations, but they aren’t required to file for 501(c)(3) status.
To help you determine whether a charity is qualified, the easiest thing to do is visit the IRS’s exempt organizations site.
You also can call an IRS toll-free number: (877) 829-5500. If you do this, you’ll have to listen to some recorded information about tax forms that probably don’t apply to you. You’ll then be given the option to “Press 2” to talk to a customer service rep about exempt organizations. Note that the waits can be quite long: up to 30 minutes.
You can always donate as much as you want to charities, but the IRS limits how much you can claim on your tax return. “Charitable donations can’t exceed 50 percent of your gross income,” Midwood says.
How To Deduct Fair Market Value
These are the four IRS rules under which you can get the maximum deduction (the fair market value) of a donated car:
1. When a charity auctions your car for $500 or less, you can claim either the fair market value or $500, whichever is less.
2. When the charity intends to make a “significant intervening use of the vehicle.” This means the charity will use the car in its work, such as delivering meals to needy people.
3. When the charity intends to make a “material improvement” to the vehicle, which is “anything that increases the car’s value and prolongs its life,” Midwood says. “It can’t be a minor repair or maintenance; it must be something like fixing the engine or systems that run the car,” she says.
4. When the charity gives or sells the vehicle to a needy individual at a price significantly below fair market value, and the gift or sale is part of the charity’s mission of helping the needy who need transportation.
How To Determine Fair Market Value
To recap, the IRS defines fair market value as the price a willing buyer would pay and a willing seller would accept for the vehicle, when neither party is compelled to buy or sell and both parties have reasonable knowledge of the relevant facts. Neither the buyer nor the seller can be an auto dealer. Both must be private parties.
Edmunds.com makes it easy to determine your vehicle’s fair market value. And, as Midwood says, your assessment has to be “an apples-to-apples comparison.”
IRS Publication 4303 explains this in more detail: “If you use a vehicle pricing guide to determine fair market value, be sure that the sales price listed is for a vehicle that is the same make, model and year, sold in the same condition, and with the same or substantially similar options or accessories as your vehicle.”
Here’s an example: Let’s say your car is a 2003 Honda Accord DX sedan (the lowest trim level). It has 200,000 miles and it’s in “average” condition. Edmunds estimates it would be worth $1,862 in a private-party sale in Southern California. You can’t instead claim the $5,318 private-party value of a Honda Accord EX sedan (a much higher trim level) with 100,000 miles in “clean condition” (a condition grade that’s one step up from “average”).
Getting Fair Market Value Is Rare
It’s not realistic to expect that your car will meet one of the most stringent fair market value requirements. Take it from 1-800-Charity Cars, which says it is the largest car donation charity in the United States. It picks up donated vehicles from across the country and gives as many of the cars as possible to people who need transportation. According to the charity, few donated cars are suitable to give to the people it serves.
“If 5 percent go to our clients, I’m thrilled,” says CEO Brian Menzies. “Although we take any car, about one-third go straight to salvage, i.e., junk.” The rest are auctioned and the proceeds go to the charity of the donor’s choice, he says.
The point that Menzies is making is this: Unless your car is in good or excellent condition, it will most likely be sold at auction or to an auto salvage yard. In that case, your deduction is based on the car’s selling price, not your fair market value estimate.
Note that this price is not something you’ll know when you donate the vehicle. “An organization has up to three years to sell the vehicle,” Midwood says. “If they sell the vehicle within three years, they must notify the IRS and the donor.”
If the April tax deadline is approaching and the charity still hasn’t sent you a notification of your vehicle’s sale, such as an acknowledgement, receipt or form 1098-C, you have two options.
Paperwork Is Important
According to IRS Publication 526, the first option is to file Form 4868 to request an automatic six-month extension of time to submit your return. Your second option is to file the return on time without claiming the deduction for the qualified vehicle. When the charity finally sends your notification, you can file an amended return using form 1040X to claim the deduction. You’ll have to attach a copy of the notification to your 1040X.
Getting tax benefits for a donated car requires a lot of documentation, whether the car is junked, sold at auction or given to a charity’s client. IRS Publication 4303 has all the details. One tip: Keep all the papers or electronic files. You’ll need them at tax time.
Another Approach to Car “Donation”
Besides giving your car directly to a charity, there is another way your vehicle can help a charity and also maximize your tax benefits: You can sell the vehicle yourself and donate the proceeds.
“If the qualified organization is going to sell the vehicle in order to receive cash, then it would make sense for an individual to sell the vehicle to a private party to maximize the amount of cash proceeds,” Midwood says.
“Privately selling the vehicle might generate larger cash proceeds than if the organization were to sell the vehicle, she says. “The donor would then make a cash contribution to the organization.”
Selling any car can be a hassle and selling one that’s on its last legs poses challenges of its own. How you proceed depends on your goal. Are you focused on getting rid of a junker with minimum effort and you’d look at the tax deduction as a nice bonus? Then donating your car makes good sense.
If your goal is to maximize your tax deduction, carefully review the steps here and then make your decision. Whatever you decide to do, parting with your old car could help a nonprofit carry out its mission. And it also might make room in your garage for a new car.
A letter left for us in a Kidney Kar donation today:
Dear NKF of Utah,
I am donating “Ruby” in honor of my father who endured so much dialysis and hoped for a new kidney but eventually succumbed to renal failure. Please make good use of her and help as many people as you can. Thank you for the opportunity to be able to give this away.
Love and Hope, Cristina and Josie.
Ready for your Monday Cry? This is a dad with heart.
PITTSBURGH — “It has been the best day of my life,” a Pennsylvania bride said of her wedding day.
Jeni Stepien is now officially a married woman, and she told CBS Pittsburgh the day wouldn’t have been possible without Arthur Thomas.
“You can never imagine what that would be like unless you actually do it because so many emotions involved in what you’re doing,” Thomas said.
Arthur, fondly known as ‘Tom,’ traveled from New Jersey to walk Jeni down the aisle at St. Anselm church in Swissvale, since her father couldn’t be there.
Jeni met Tom for the first time on the eve of her wedding, when she felt her father’s heart beat for the first time in 10 years. Michael Stepien was murdered in Swissvale back in 2006.
Tom received Michael’s heart after his death.
“I was on death’s door when he was murdered and I needed a heart or I was going to be dying in the next few days,” Thomas said.
Jeni asked Tom if he would do the honors in a letter.
“I was just so thankful that my dad could be here with us today in spirit and a piece of his physical being as well. That was really special for us,” she said.
Jeni’s groom was also moved by the gesture.
“I was just overtaken with emotions when I finally saw her walking down. The most beautiful woman in the world that I’ve ever seen before,” Paul Maenner said.
“What a greater honor could a person have than walking the daughter of the man who’s given his heart to him. I can’t imagine a greater honor,” Thomas said.
3707 N Canyon Rd #1D
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