Is volunteer work deductible?
Although you can't deduct the value of your time or service, you can deduct expenses related to volunteering for a qualified organization as long as those expenses are:
- Directly and solely connected with the volunteer work you provided; and
- Not reimbursed; and
- Not considered personal, living, or family expenses.
For example, if you voluntarily fixed up an elderly neighbor's house one weekend, it wouldn't be deductible because it wasn't done through a qualified charitable organization.
But if you did similar voluntary work through a qualified organization, you could deduct mileage to and from the job site as well as any unreimbursed supplies you purchased to carry out the work. However, you wouldn't be able to deduct the value of your time or expertise, nor could you deduct your meals or the cost of a babysitter (those are living/family expenses).
To enter eligible expenses related to voluntary charity work, follow the same directions for entering charitable donations.