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jri-pl digest: March 06, 1999 #poland

Dennis Gries <dgries@...>
 

To Ada and any others -

Travel by US citizens subject to US tax laws to Poland for the purpose of
geneaological research and education, etc. normally will not result in a
deduction either for education or as a contribution.

The education deduction might result if a person is a professional
geneaologist, and then to the extent that the time spent on professional
education (as opposed to personal research) bore to the total number of days
in the trip. The contribution scam is that the payment for certain trips is
made to a non-profit organization and the traveler claims this as a
contribution. In reality, since the traveler has received value equivalent
for personal use, then the payment is not a contribution.

p.s. I am a tax accountant of many years experience in both individual and
business taxation.

dennis gries == dgries@... Fort Washington, PA

MILTGOLD@...
 

In a message dated 3/15/99 10:53:36 AM, dgries@... writes:

<< In reality, since the traveler has received value equivalent

for personal use, then the payment is not a contribution. >>

I believe this is usually determined by the sponsoring organization. For
instance, the U. S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC has determined
what level of membership benefits represent a charitable donation beyond the
level of what contributors receive as value in newsletters, etc. As such, the
organization involved needs to be contacted for a written statement of what
level of value it considers travelers would receive. It may not be much but
it may not be zero, either.

Milton R. Goldsamt, Ph.D.
Research Statistician
(not a CPA but someone with a working knowledge of itemized deductions from
some experience with them)
miltgold@...