I was introduced to this scheme to save huge amounts of tax money by a friend back a few days ago. When I first heard about it I thought man sounds like a sweet deal (basically too good to be true type of thing). As I have done a bit of research I have to say my logical feeling of it being too good to be true has been confirmed by the tax laws I have look into (despite people who will dispute otherwise it till they are red in the face). The scheme is that you give this "non-profit" organization (Canadian Humanitarian Trust) a donation and you get a tax receipt for it. That part is simple enough. They then buy humanitarian aid drugs for people in Africa at very cheep prices. This also sounds very good. The scheme part comes in when they donate these drugs to Africa they re-evaluate the price of the gift to many times more than what was originally paid and you get another tax receipt for this new amount that is many times more than the original monetary gift. Here is an example. Give $1,000 to CHT they take their "unspecified" cut then buy some medical drugs. These drugs are donated to Africa at a stated value of $5,000(or more). So you get a total of $6,000 worth of donation receipts for the cost of $1,000. Donations receive a credit of around 50% so you get $3,000 dollars in taxes back. So overall you come ahead with $2,000 in your pocket. If you give more such as $10,000 receive $30,000 in taxes back, you get the idea. However in December 2003 the Canadian Government implemented new tax laws to stop people from doing this. allowable charitable donation amount will be limited to the taxpayer's cost of the property. I'm no tax lawyer, but this along with a few other laws that I read about concerning knowingly deceiving the taxation system were serious offences. I am sure some people will most likely get away with this if they do not get audited, but is it worth the risk. Many people I have read about justified joining this very shady deal because they want to help people in Africa by getting them the much needed drugs (CHT has played this angle very well). I say give your donation to a well known organization that gives all the money toward this cause (so they may buys drugs that are needed, not just that have the greatest markup) and that does not take their own "unspecified cuts" such as CHT does.
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