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Low numbers take up the small donations scheme

Low numbers take up the small donations scheme 22nd July 2015

It is thought that many charities and churches are yet to claim the government's "top up" gift aid payment, known as the gift aid small donations scheme (GASDS).

In the first two years of the scheme, the government forecasted that a total of £135m would be paid out to UK charities in GASDS payments. Parish Resources suggested that over £15m of this per year would be going to UK churches.

However, subsequent figures have revealed that a total of just £27m has been claimed back under the scheme between 2013 and 2015. Meanwhile, a fraction of the 15m Parish Resources forecasted has been claimed back by churches.

The GASDS allows your church to claim gift aid style relief on non-gift aided cash donations such as those obtained through plate collections.

Currently this payment could be worth an extra £1,250 to your church per annum and in April 2016, this is set to increase to £2,000.

A review of GASDS will take place in spring 2016 and many groups such as the Charity Finance Group and Institute of Fundraising are pressurising HMRC to improve the scheme.

It is thought that the main problems with GASDS is the lack of awareness of the scheme and the complexity of its administration.

To help simplify the small donations scheme, we have put together a “bitesize” guide on the topic.

This is part of our Gift Aid Made Simple series, which aims to simplify the gift aid guidelines that HMRC provides for churches.

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