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Thanks for visiting! My name is Lori and I am married to my high school sweetheart and have 2 beautiful girls. What is 'Life With Sugar & Spice'? It's a blog where I will share everything from my faith in Jesus Christ and my girls (sugar and spice) to thrifting and decorating! I started it as a way to showcase our everyday life to family out of town!
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Saturday, July 21, 2012

Donating Your Tax Dollars

*****This post is for my mother and is about the Georgia tax and private school scholarship program.  Skip over it if it doesn't interest you!

Did you know that you can support any accredited private school in Georgia and you can be reimbursed 100% of your Georgia State tax liability up to $2500 per year?  If you own a corporation, you can donate 75% of your liability up to $50,000.

Seriously!  You can donate to any private school in Georgia and the amount is refunded to you on your state income tax return.  

I know it sounds too good to be true, but it isn't.  We have gone through this process twice and it really is as simple as filling out some forms on the scholarship website, mailing a check and then getting the money back on our tax return.

So why wouldn't you want to donate your money to a school instead of letting the government have it?

Our girls' school, Cornerstone Prep, uses The Pay it Forward® Scholarship program.  Though, there are other programs that help with this process.  The school receives 100% of the donations and those donations can go to specific students that the donor can choose.  

So how does the scholarship program make money? 
They take 10% of all corporate donations.  And since corporate donations account for a large percent of what they receive, they do not take any money from individual donors.  

 How does the process work?

First, go to the Pay it Forward Scholarship website, and apply to be a donor.  Choose a school (our girls attend Cornerstone Prep Academy), donation amount, and a student (if you have one you'd like the money to go to).  Fill out the application.

Second, wait for the state to accept your donation request.  This takes about 30 days.  It took us about 45 days.  You'll receive a letter from the state stating that you have 60 days to send your check to the scholarship program.

Third, this is where it's difficult for some families.  You have to be prepared to mail a check in whatever amount you choose to donate to the program (Pay it Forward).  For us, it was $1,000.  Not everyone can do that.  

For us, we counter this by having the least amount of state tax withdrawn from K's check that we can.  So basically, we consider the donation a prepayment of taxes.  And, since we also receive a scholarship, it goes towards our tuition cost which we'd pay anyways.

Fourth, at tax time, you make sure to use the deduction on your state return and you are credited dollar for dollar the amount you donated. In our case, we were refunded the exact amount since we paid in more tax than we owed.

You can also use this as a federal deduction, though you can't use the entire amount.  See your tax professional for help with this.  If using TurboTax, this is computed for you.

So, what's in it for an individual with no children in private school?  

Well, honestly, not a whole lot.  It redirects your tax money to a private school, gives you a federal tax charitable deduction and you help a child in need.  I look at it this way, you're going to pay the money regardless.  So why not have it go to a good cause?

If you're interested, you can go to this link: http://www.payitforwardscholarships.com 
 They have a ton of information under the resources tab that explains the tax code and process.

And, if you're still not convinced that it's that simple, feel free to call and speak to a representative:

615 Oak Street, Suite F 
 Gainesville, GA 30501 
Ph: 770.534.3611 


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