Journey To The 2010 Winter Olympics

Friday, October 06, 2006

Sponsorship: A Tax-deductible Donation or Gift?

In the course of my fundraising efforts, people have been asking if sponsorship is tax-deductible. Yes, the USBSF offers the Amateur Athlete Training Fund for this purpose. Here's how it works:

Making a tax deductible contribution (the short story):

The sponsor sends the funds made payable to the USBSF - Athletic Training Fund to:

U.S. Bobsled & Skeleton Federation
196 Old Military Road
Lake Placid, NY 12946

If the donor’s name and complete address is not clearly printed on the check, please provide that information in an attached letter. This will ensure proper routing of subsequent correspondence including the tax info/ receipt. Also in the attached letter, state that the funds are for me, Jay Beckner! Do not put my name on the check or it will be considered a gift (and therefore not tax-deductible).

Please let me know when you plan make a dontation so that I can check with the Federation to make sure the funds have been allocated properly. I will access the funds by submitting reimbursement forms to the USBSF subject to the rules and limits of the ATF.

I respect your decision to help and you will not be slighted on effort-- I will pursue this goal relentlessly. The financial need for the 2006-2007 season is $11,000. Thank you for your interest and support!

Making a tax deductible contribution (the details):



The United States Bobsled & Skeleton Federation is pleased to offer the Amateur Athlete Training Fund (ATF) to help offset the training expenses of its athletes. Sponsors and donors may send donations to the ATF to benefit the general athlete pool, or a specific purpose. However, the USBSF maintains discretionary use of these funds if an athlete retires, is suspended, or leaves the sport. Additionally, in order to receive reimbursement of expenses through the ATF, the athlete must demonstrate the desire to participate and continue to participate in the sport of bobsled or skeleton. Attached is a list of qualifying expenses that athletes use as a guide to access these funds. The USBSF will reimburse athletes upon receipt of qualifying expense reports.

The ATF is intended to provide incentive for individual athletes to develop sponsorship to cover their individual bobsled and skeleton training needs while maintaining their amateur eligibility status.

Under joint supervision of the USBSF Treasurer and Executive Director, the following general procedures will be observed:

The athlete, and the Executive Director’s designate, will communicate regarding the specific dispersals from his/her training fund. The budget and audit committee of the USBSF will make final decisions with regards to any questionable expenditure.

USBSF Discretion

If an athlete helps to solicit donations to this fund, we will make every effort to assist that athlete in qualifying for those funds with the following exception:

Any remaining funds in an athlete’s account upon his/her retirement, suspension, or death will be used to assist other active athletes. An athlete will be considered to be retired if he/she does not slide for one entire season, and has not sent a letter to the USBSF expressing his/her intent to slide in a subsequent season.

Funding Allocations

100% of donated/gifted funds are available to athletes.

Gifts vs. Donations

Funds provided to athletes which do no qualify as “donations” for the ATF are considered to be gifts from the donor to the athlete. Gifts should be made payable directly to the athletes rather than gifting through the Athletic Training Fund.

If the sponsorship funds are to be classified as a “gift”, the sponsor will not receive credit for a tax-deductible donation. In this scenario, the USBSF will not need to report your income to the IRS.
The USBSF will assume all sponsorship funds received are “donations”, except in the following three specific cases:

1. A sponsorship will be considered a “gift: if the sponsor sends a letter with the donation specifically stating the sponsorship is a “gift.”

2. A sponsorship will be considered a “gift: if the USBSF is aware of any familial relationship between the donor and donee, regardless of intent by the donor.

3. A sponsorship will be considered a “gift” if the athlete’s name appears anywhere on the check (even in the memo section).

If the sponsorship funds are classified as a “donation”, the sponsor may take credit for a tax-deductible donation as IRS rules permit. In this scenario, if the athlete subsequently accesses $600 or more from those “donated” funds from his/her account during any calendar year, the USBSF will issue a 1099-MISC to the athlete by January 31 of the following year, meaning the athlete’s income for the previous calendar year will be reported to the Internal Revenue Service. From there, it will be the athlete’s responsibility to report this income on their annual tax return. The USBSF does not offer tax advice and donors and athletes should consult a tax advisor.

Allowable expense categories:

skeleton sled with 1 set of runners ($2000), modifications to a sled (this total payable once- 500), helmet (when not supplied- 150), Racing gloves (when not supplied -50), Protective pads (50), Speed suit (200), Track spikes (2 pair- 200), Training clothes (when not supplied- 500), Sled maintenance (tools & supplies- 250), Transportation to various training sites (when not covered- 3000), Extra runners (2 pair - when not supplied- 700), Health care (1500), Per diem ($70 per day - 180 days max -when not supplied) per diem includes lodging&meals $60/day + incidentals $10/day (12,600), Track fees - annual cap (1,000), Dues, educational fees, and other training fees (i.e. Misc.- 2000, Maximum (24700)-- these limits are currently under review.

Making a gift:

Please contact me by email if you would rather send a gift directly to me. I will not comingle the funds with my personal accounts and promise to spend conservatively and responsibly toward becoming the best slider I can be.


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