tax benefits of donation?

Thomas G. Lammers lammers at UWOSH.EDU
Mon Feb 14 08:38:32 CST 2005

At 08:16 AM 2/14/2005, Gregory Zolnerowich wrote:
>I have an alum who wants to donate a few thousand insect specimens to
>our collection. He's interested in any potential tax benefits. I
>don't want to be his tax advisor, and recall a fellow from the IRS
>who addressed the issue of declaring a value of donated specimens for
>tax purposes at an Entomological Collections Network  meeting some
>years ago. He wasn't very keen on assigning value to specimens.

We recently were the beneficiary of a gift-in-kind of an alum's personal
herbarium -- about 8600 very nice specimens of professional quality and
above average interest.

I believe what the IRS requires is an independent assessment of value.  As
the recipient of the gift, you *cannot* be involved in appraising it;
that's a conflict of interest.  All I did was provide here with names and
contact info of about 10 professional herbarium curators.  She contacted
one or more and arranged for an appraisal, which, I assume, satisfied the

Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor and Curator of the Herbarium (OSH)
Department of Biology and Microbiology
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901-8640 USA

e-mail:       lammers at
phone:      920-424-1002
fax:           920-424-1101

Plant systematics; classification, nomenclature, evolution, and
biogeography of the Campanulaceae s. lat.

"Today's mighty oak is yesterday's nut that stood his ground."
                                                               -- Anonymous

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