Cars For Corps FAQ


Can you briefly explain the vehicle donation process?

The vehicle donation process is super quick and simple. You can fill out the information questions listed on the website and we will contact you, or you can call us toll free and we ask you a couple questions. These questions include information like your contact information, the make and model of the vehicle to be donated, and where the car is located. We do all the rest – from arranging a towing company to pick up our car to delivering you the paperwork used for tax benefit purposes.  Please feel free to call us anytime at 866-929-4762

What kind of vehicles can I donate? 

You can donate cars, trucks, vans, RVs, motorcycles, boats, ATVs, and more. If it’s a vehicle you can donate it.

How do I get the vehicle to you?

We can pick it up, or you can drop it off at our facility.  If your car needs to be towed then your car or other vehicle will be towed from a location of your choice by a professional vehicle transportation company.

Does the car/vehicle need to be in running condition?

Not at all!  We take almost any vehicle from almost any location.

What paperwork do I need to have in order to make the donation?

Most of the time all you need is a signed title, but if you have any questions or concerns please contact us at 866-929-4762.  For the State of Georgia:  Georgia title and registration information:

Passenger vehicles, motorcycles, kit vehicles and trailers with a unladen weight of 2000 lbs or more 1985 and newer require a title.  Mini motorcycles, boats, boat trailers, ATVs, snowmobiles and homemade trailers do not require a title

What will FOS do with the vehicle I donate?

Almost all vehicles we accept for donation are sold at auction and the proceeds benefit the organization.

What is the tax benefit amount for me to donate my vehicle?

Please visit the IRS website for more information.   Specifically, you may want to review IRS Publication 4303 – A Donor’s Guide to Vehicle Donations.

How do I get the necessary information to deduct the donation on my taxes?  When we pick up the vehicle we will deliver you the paperwork used for tax benefit purposes.  If you drop the vehicle off at our facility then we will give you the paper work at that time.

How do you determine the value of my donated vehicle?  Now you don’t have to because of the IRS Car Donation Tax Laws.  Your car donation to an IRS approved 501(c)(3) charity is still tax deductible and will fall into one of these categories:

For vehicles sold for under $500, you can claim the fair market value up to $500.00 without any additional paperwork.  The preliminary tax receipt will be mailed after vehicle has been confirmed picked up.

If the gross proceeds from the sale of your donated vehicle exceed $500.00, your deduction will be limited to the actual sale price. You will also be asked by the donee organization to provide your Social Security for the purposes of completing its IRS Form 1098-C form. 

We will provide you with a receipt stating the final sales price of your vehicle within 30 days of its sale.

Can I donate my car if it failed an emissions (smog) test?

Yes, we are happy to take vehicles without a current emissions test.

How quickly can I get my vehicle picked up?

Once the donation record has been created and completed, we will reach out to you within 2 to 3 business days to schedule your pick-up. If you need your vehicle picked up sooner, please call us toll-free at 866-929-4762 as we may be able to make those arrangements.

What do I do after I donate?

You will receive a donation receipt once you sign the title over to Friends of Spirit (FOS). Please take a “copy” of the donation receipt, your license tags and registration to DMV as soon as possible to de-register the car. Once it’s de-registered, then call your insurance company to cancel coverage (they might want a copy of the donation receipt, too). Further documentation you’ll want to keep is listed in the following answer. (Note: If applicable, Government regulations require owners to remove all military installation decals and other special access decals “before” a car is sold, traded or donated.)

What if my donated vehicle is not sold by FOS?

We typically will always sell the vehicle, but if the organization decides to use the donated vehicle for transportation purposes you will be notified within 30 days of the donation.  The following info is from IRS Publication 4303 – A Donor’s Guide to Vehicle Donation.

If the car is worth more than $500, the donor must complete Section A of IRS Form 8283 and attach it to their tax return. Donors are required to file with his/her tax return a written acknowledgement from the charity. If the charity sells the car, the charity must provide the donor with a certification that the car was sold at “arms length” between unrelated parties and the sale price of the car within 30 days. In this case, the donor’s tax deductions will be limited to the total amount the charity sold the car for. If the charity does not sell the car, it must provide the donor with a receipt within 30 days of the contribution. The charity may also be required to provide certification to the donor stating how it plans to use or improve the car and stating that it promises not to sell or transfer the car.

If the car is worth $5,000 or more, an independent appraisal is necessary. The donor must also fill out Section B of IRS Form 8283. For cars worth less than $5,000, use the Kelley Blue Book, the Hearst Black Book, or a guide from the National Auto Dealers Association (NADA) to determine the market value. Make sure you use the correct figure for the date, mileage, and condition of your car. Picking the highest figure for your car model and year without taking into account other factors may not pass muster with the IRS.

TAX LAWS ARE CHANGING:  As always check with your tax professional for what a charitable contribution can be worth to you. The “CARS FOR CORPS” program, its operators, Friends of Spirit Inc. and Spirit of Atlanta Drum & Bugle Corps do not provide tax advice and we are not responsible for your tax return or its accuracy.