Donated vehicles are typically picked up within 3 business days. During our busiest donation months –December & January – we ask that donors allow more time for pick up.
Donors receive a donation receipt and a tax receipt. A donation receipt is provided by our tow truck driver at the point of pick up. This proof of donation can be used to cancel insurance and assist in returning tags to Department of Motor Vehicles.
A tax receipt, which contains the value of donor’s tax deduction, is sent to the donor after their vehicle has been processed (See below: when can I expect my tax receipt). As a complimentary service, VFC also provides a 1098c for all donations, except those that sell for under $500.
VFC will provide you an initial assessment of how the vehicle will be used at the point of donation. A final determination will be made once we are able to physically review the vehicle.
All cars donations are reviewed within 10 days of pick up. An email will be sent to the donor within 2 weeks.
Our first priorities is the safety and reliability of the vehicle. We expect that an awarded vehicle will provide at least 2 years or 24,000 miles of service. In addition, most recipients are single mothers with very little car knowledge. They have very little confidence in cars that are older and/or have higher miles.
Please note that these year/mileage restrictions are guidelines for how donations will be used. Vehicles for Change reviews and evaluates each donation on a case-by-case basis.
Luxury vehicles typically carry a much higher repair costs and are too expensive for our low income recipients. These vehicles (and occasionally other donated vehicles that have a high book value) are sold through Freedom Wheels to maximize the donor’s tax deduction and the return for VFC.
A donor’s tax deduction depends on how their vehicle is used by VFC. Read our deduction guidelines.
As long as no major repairs are made to these cars, donors of vehicles sold through Freedom Wheels are able to deduct the selling price of their vehicle. This price is typically close or equal to the fair market value of the vehicle.
Donors whose vehicles sell at auction are able to deduct the selling price of the vehicle. It is important to note that auctions are a unique market. In our experience, vehicles at auction typically sell for 1/3 – ½ of the fair market value of the vehicle. Donors can use an online tool such as the “What’s My Current Car Worth” feature on www.kbb.com to estimate the fair market value of their vehicle.
This depends on how VFC uses the donated vehicle: Vehicles awarded to a family:
Per IRS Regulations
Vehicles awarded to a family: Donors will be sent a tax receipt within 30 days of the vehicle’s pick up (As long as there are not title or lien problems).
A vehicle needing major repair and VFC completes the major repair will also receive a tax receipt within 30 days of pick up.
For all other vehicles a tax receipt will be mailed within 30 days of the date of the sale.
The IRS stipulates that VFC is not able to enter anything into 4C if the vehicle is transferred to a needy individual for significantly below Fair Market Value. Please click on the IRS link for more information.
Per IRS regulations, it is up to the donor to determine the car’s condition at the time of donation. Donors can use an online tool such as the “What’s My Current Car Worth” feature on www.kbb.com to determine their vehicle’s worth.
A donation that sells for less than $500 the donor may take the higher amount of the fair market value of the vehicle or the selling price up to $500. Please click on A Donor’s Guide to Vehicle Donations for more information.
You may deduct the Fair Market Value minus the estimated cost of repairs. The 1098c form that will be sent to the donor will not have selling date or an amount sold (Section 4b and 4C). VFC will provide the cost of the repairs to you.
If the vehicle is jointly owned and you are the surviving owner or spouse:
If the vehicle was transferred to you through a will but you are not the surviving owner of spouse:
If you want to donate but do not want to go to MVA/DMV for a new title:
Send to Vehicles for Change:
The first step is to visit the website of the DMV in the state on the title. There may be a form you can submit to update your address, and then you can submit the duplicate title form. If there is no information, you may have to call them to find out how to update your address in their system.
Contact the lien holder printed on the front of your title. By providing your contact information and vehicle information (VIN, year, make, model), you should be able to obtain a lien release.
Note: Vehicles for Change needs an original version of the lien release, not a copy