Since 2016/17, in order for relief to be available to partners, each and every individual partner will need to make their own Gift Aid declaration for all donations. Each declaration must contain the name and address for each partner and list their share of the donation.
The declaration does not need to be signed by all partners and, instead made electronically as long as suitable records kept. An email could also cover more than one charity, with the firm producing a standard Gift Aid declaration form or letter for each charity, which could be covered under a single email. However, this offers little flexibility when making irregular donations or in the wake of specific events.
Options to partnerships making charitable donations and gift aid
As an alternative to ensure relief remains available, for both the partners and charity, removing the constant administrative burden, there are certain options a partnership might consider:
- The partnership could set up a charitable trust, set up an account with the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) or similar organisation effectively creating an ‘in-house’ charity. Each individual partner can then make a continuing or enduring Gift Aid declaration in favour of CAF or the in-house charity, such that all donations made by the partnership to the trust are covered. The trustees of the charity would then determine how to allocate its funds.
- Alternatively, a nominated partner, or group of nominated partners, could make all donations for the partnership and claim the gift aid relief personally on their tax return for these donations. Partnership profit shares could then be adjusted to reflect the additional payment they will make, and additional relief to which they are entitled.