Good Samaritan Hunger Relief Tax Incentive Act

The Good Samaritan Hunger Relief Tax Incentive Act (S.94)

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, up to 96 billion pounds of food goes to waste each year in the United States. At the same time, Federal government statistics tell us that 31 million people are hungry or at risk of hunger today in America. If a small percentage of the food that goes to waste could be captured and directed to food banks, millions of additional low-income, hungry people would be fed.

The Good Samaritan Hunger Relief Tax Incentive Act:

  • Provides businesses, both small and large, a real incentive to donate, rather than dump excess food;
  • Allows all business taxpayers (including farmers, restaurants and food manufacturers) to take a heightened charitable tax deduction for donations of fit and wholesome food to non-profit charitable organizations that serve the needy;
  • Codifies an important Tax Court ruling, Lucky Stores, Inc. v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, in which the Court upheld the right of the taxpayer to determine the fair market value of donated food rather than the IRS.

The Federal Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act

On October 1, 1996, President Clinton signed this act to encourage donation of food and grocery products to non-profit organizations for distribution to needy individuals. This law:

  • Protects you from liability when you donate to a non-profit organization;
  • Protects you from civil and criminal liability should the product donated in good faith later cause harm to the needy recipient
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