donated e-books tax deductible?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills

donated e-books tax deductible?

Postby mortal » Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:45 am

Howdy folks,

If I donated e-books to a library, or other non profit 503ish organization, would said donation be tax deductible? I believe the Irs says that such a donation has to be deducted at the fair market value. Well, there are no 'used' kindle books, so wouldn't this be valued at the sale price?

Lord knows my home town library could use some help expanding it's selection of ebooks :wink:
mortal
 
Posts: 361
Joined: 16 Sep 2008

Re: donated e-books tax deductible?

Postby rfburns » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:54 pm

Someone may correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is you don't "own" ebooks in the same manner as a paper book. When you buy you are purchasing a "license" that may be revoked at any time. See below for better a summary.
http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/as ... ing-ebooks
rfburns
 
Posts: 438
Joined: 18 Oct 2009

Re: donated e-books tax deductible?

Postby SSSS » Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:17 pm

I'm having visions of wiping out your entire tax obligation by e-mailing one book to EVERY charity.
User avatar
SSSS
 
Posts: 1846
Joined: 18 Jun 2010

Re: donated e-books tax deductible?

Postby ThatGuy » Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:42 pm

How do you donate an ebook?

I hear you on the selection, I called my local library and asked how I could purchase ebooks for the library. I was told it's not possible.
Work is the curse of the drinking class - Oscar Wilde
ThatGuy
 
Posts: 637
Joined: 5 Feb 2010

Re: donated e-books tax deductible?

Postby freebeer » Sat Feb 02, 2013 10:15 pm

rfburns wrote:Someone may correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is you don't "own" ebooks in the same manner as a paper book. When you buy you are purchasing a "license" that may be revoked at any time. See below for better a summary.
http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/as ... ing-ebooks


You are correct in most situations that when you "buy" an eBook you have a perpetual license not property, and in most cases this license is not transferable, even to family or your heirs. This is not just eBooks though - also your iTunes music library for example. Whether the license can be revoked at any time is another question... that may not be the case and that may or may not fall afoul of laws regulating commerce.

Some eBook publishers, usually of the more progressive bent (like O'Reilly for tech books), do allow for transfer/resale - it all depends on the license terms.

eBooks licensed for library lending is yet a different kettle of fish with some publishers demanding special terms such as the license expiring after a certain number of loans.
freebeer
 
Posts: 1137
Joined: 2 May 2007
Location: Seattle area USA


Return to Personal Finance (Not Investing)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: 22twain, caroljm36, CassieInVa, IlikeJackB, Jerrybaby, LowER, MnD, oldzey, Sales6280, Steady, Zabar and 66 guests