By Gina Calvert

Are Donation Processing Fees Tax Deductible?

Givers can deduct charitable gifts to churches, but you may wonder if you can also deduct the donation processing fees.

The simple rule for individuals says YES … that is, if you received no goods or services in return. 100% of the amount you give as a gift, including donation processing fees, is tax deductible. You can report the gift amount plus the fees on your tax return. You will also see this total amount (gift + fees) on your gift acknowledgements, receipts, and giving statements.

But what if you’re registering for a retreat and your fee includes the cost of a $10 book and lodging? The book and lodgings represent a tangible return on your gift. So the cost of those items – and the associated donation processing fees – are not tax deductible.

We advise givers to make sure they understand these charitable contributions guidelines.


When giving to a church or charitable organization, the donation processing fees are NOT yours, the giver’s, responsibility. However, many online giving platforms now allow you to OPT IN to pay the donation processing fee, if you wish. The giving form should display a checkbox that says, “Yes, I will pay the donation processing fee.” The exact amount of the fee and the donation total should be displayed.

No organization should apply donation fees to you without your knowledge, or ask you on the giving form to OPT OUT of paying the fees. It should always be an OPT IN request.

VISION2 online giving for churches allows givers to opt in to pay the donation processing fees if they wish.

RELATED: Navigating the “High” Cost of Online Giving