Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos, singing from a hawthorn bush, Minsmere, Suffolk

Gift Aid FAQs

If you would like to speak to someone about Gift Aid, then please call membership services on 01767 693680.

FAQs

Will Gift Aid cost me anything?

Gift Aid doesn’t cost you a penny, ticking the box just means that we can reclaim the tax on your membership subscriptions and donations, if you are a UK taxpayer, directly from HMRC.

Am I eligible to make a Gift Aid declaration?

To qualify for Gift Aid, you must pay an amount of UK Income and/or Capital Gains Tax, which is at least equal to the amount that we and all other charities will reclaim on your donations in each tax year (6 April to 5 April). If you pay less Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all your donations in the tax year, it is your responsibility to pay any difference to HMRC. Gift Aid is claimed at 25p per £1 of your support. NB Taxes such as VAT and Council Tax do not qualify for Gift Aid. 

How will I know if I pay income tax?

Look at papers relating to money paid to you. Savings/bank account statements will normally show if tax has been deducted and the amount.

This also used to apply to dividend income. However, new rules introduced in April 2016, mean that a Dividend Tax Allowance now applies instead, and dividend income up to the amount of that allowance will be tax free. So if you are receiving large amounts in dividends but with minimal other income, and if you make sizeable Gift Aid donations, you might need to check your tax position.

How will I know if I pay income tax on my pension?

As a pensioner you will receive a P60 form each year. Keep this safe, as it will show any tax deductions. 

Do I pay capital gains tax?

You are usually aware if you pay capital gains tax, as you would have had to declare it. This would have been declared by yourself or by your accountant/financial advisor.

I don’t pay tax but my partner does.

If you have joint or family RSPB membership and your partner pays tax then he/she can tick the Gift Aid box, provided that the membership is paid either from your partner’s account or from a jointly held or named account (ie the payment is from  the ‘Gift Aider’). 

Is it worthwhile as I only pay the minimal subscription?

Every penny counts. We can reclaim 25p in every pound. For example a year’s membership of £50 would equate to £12.50 Gift Aid per year. We have over a million members, so if everyone ticked the Gift Aid box we could claim a substantial amount to help us.

Can I still help if I’m not a UK taxpayer?

Yes. By ticking the non-taxpayer box, you can help us keep our records up to date.

If I have a Gift Aid declaration, what should I do if my tax situation changes and I no longer pay UK Income or capital gains tax?

If you no longer pay sufficient UK Income or Capital Gains tax, please inform us (01767 693680) and we will stop claiming Gift Aid on your membership and/or donations. 

I may have already made a Gift Aid declaration to another charity. Does this mean I can't tick the box again, or don't need to?

No. Ticking one box means that only that one particular charity can reclaim the tax on your donations, so it’s important to tick a box for each charity that you want to claim Gift Aid. However, If you pay less Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all your donations in the tax year, it is your responsibility to pay any difference to HMRC. Gift Aid is claimed at 25p on every pound of your support.

I support several charities, can I declare Gift Aid with all of them?

To declare Gift Aid, you must pay an amount of UK Income and/or Capital Gains Tax, which is at least equal to the combined amount of gift aid that charities are claiming. If you pay less tax than this then you can stop one or more of the declarations to ensure the gift aid is not more than the tax you are paying. Simply contact the supporter services team at the charity or charities of your choice. The below chart provides an illustration of supporting three charities.

I’ve already made a Gift Aid declaration to the RSPB. Do I need to tick the box again?

Not unless we ask you. All your donations and subscriptions are covered with one declaration. 

Should I indicate that I have made a Gift Aid declaration on my tax return?

Not if you are a standard rate taxpayer and do not receive a tax return from HM Revenue & Customs. However, if you do receive a tax return, you must declare the information. 

I am a self-assessment taxpayer and I pay tax at the higher rate of 40 per cent. How can I give part or all of my tax repayment to the RSPB?

From 5 April 2011 you can no longer donate your tax repayment directly to the RSPB using your tax return. However, you can still donate your tax refund in the normal way when you make a donation. In this way, if you have signed up to Gift Aid, the RSPB will be able to recover the basic rate of tax on this donation too.

Does Gift Aid affect any of the covenants (pledges) I have signed for in favour of the RSPB so far?

A Gift Aid declaration can replace any existing covenants you have, which would be our preference, so there is no need to have separate covenants for your membership and/or donations.

Sign up to Gift Aid

Use Gift Aid and you can make your donations, including membership subscriptions, worth more. For every pound you give us, we currently get an extra 25p from HM Revenue & Customs.