Donation to the school and tax deductible costs - it's worth knowing!

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Donating is becoming more and more common among entrepreneurs. Usually, these donations are deducted only in the annual tax return, and sometimes it is possible to include them directly in the tax costs. At the beginning of 2019, a new tax relief was introduced, i.e. the possibility of deducting a donation to public schools providing vocational training. Donation to the school and tax deductible costs - is it possible to recognize this donation in the KPiR? We answer.

Donation - free contract

The donation is called an agreement in which at least two parties must participate. The donor (the person making the donation) is on one side, and the recipient or recipient (the person or persons receiving the donation) is on the other side. A donation is a free contract, so the donor does not receive any compensation from the recipient when making a donation. Therefore, a donation is nothing more than a contract in which the donor undertakes to donate to the recipient free of charge from his property.

Types of donations classified as tax credits

The tax relief is based on art. 26 sec. 1 point 9 of the PIT Act, the following types of donations:

  • for a public benefit organization (OPP),
  • for the purposes of religious worship,
  • for blood donation,
  • for the purposes of vocational training to public vocational schools.

Additionally, a donation to the charity and care of the church and church legal persons under other acts (e.g. the act on relations between the State and the Catholic Church in the Republic of Poland - Article 55 (7)) is also included.

Donation to the school and tax deductible costs

In the PIT Act, tax deductible expenses may include expenses that are closely related to the income generated or are intended to secure the source of income. In addition, they should be incurred as part of business activity, and should not be listed in the catalog of expenses contained in Art. 23 sec. 1 of the PIT Act.

When analyzing the catalog, it should be pointed out that donations (regardless of the institution or thing they were transferred to) may not constitute a tax deductible cost (Article 23 (1) (11) of the Act). In conclusion, the donation to the school cannot be included in the KPiR. The exception is a donation in the form of food to a public benefit organization, which is intended solely for the purposes of charitable activities carried out by these organizations. Thus, taxpayers (taxed on general principles or with a flat tax) may include in tax costs (KPiR) expenses related to the purchase or production of food products (except for alcohol) provided as part of such a donation. It should be emphasized that there are no limits on the deduction of donated food during the year.

Donation to the school in the annual tax return

How is it possible to deduct a school donation?

Pursuant to Art. 26 sec. 6ea, the deduction of a donation to the school is possible in a situation where the subject of the donation are:

  • teaching materials or
  • fixed assets,

At the same time, the donation item must be complete, usable and not older than 12 years. So donations in cash or in kind are not deductible. Deduction of the donation for vocational education to public schools providing vocational education from the income in the annual tax return is possible if the tax scale is chosen as a form of taxation, a flat rate tax or a lump sum on recorded income. It should be specified that pursuant to Art. 26 sec. 13a of the PIT Act, it follows that deduction of a school donation is inadmissible when the donation was:

  • included in tax deductible costs or
  • reimbursed to the taxpayer in any form, either
  • has been deducted from taxable income on the principles set out in art. 30c (i.e. with a flat tax) or has been deducted from income under the Act on flat-rate income tax on certain income earned by natural persons.

Example 1.

From his youth, Mr. Jan donated teaching aids that were used over 20 years ago. Due to the fact that the teaching aids are more than 12 years old, Mr. Jan will not be able to deduct the donation.

Example 2.

Ms Monika decided to transfer her fixed asset for vocational training to public vocational schools. It is fully operational and is 3 years old. As the property meets the conditions, the donation may be deducted.

Example 3.

Mr. Władysław has a projector in his company property, which he would like to donate for the purposes of vocational education to public schools providing vocational education. Technically it is not complete, but it is serviceable and 2 years have passed since its purchase. As the projector is incomplete, it does not meet the conditions for deducting its donation.

Deduction of a PIT donation for which schools?

In order to be able to deduct a vocational education donation, it must be made to schools named by the legislator (but not, for example, to the parents 'council or teachers' council). Below are the tables with the list of schools for which a donation can be deducted:

School for which a donation can be deducted: Additional conditions for the school to benefit from the deduction:
Art schools No additional conditions.
Five-year technical secondary school The school may be admitted to minors, minors and adults covered by special education organized in accordance with the provisions of the regulation on the conditions for organizing education, upbringing and care for disabled, socially maladjusted children and youth and at risk of social maladjustment.
A three-year first-cycle industry school
A two-year second-cycle industry school Adults and minors may be admitted to the school.
Post-secondary school for people with secondary education or secondary industry education, with a teaching period of no more than 2.5 years
A public institution or center that is a lifelong learning institution, practical training institution, and training and professional development centers, enabling the acquisition and supplementation of knowledge, skills and professional qualifications No additional conditions.


Example 4.

Ms. Monika donated teaching aids to the art school. Due to the fact that the donation was made to the school indicated in the list of schools that are eligible for the discount, the donation may be deducted in the annual tax return.

Example 5.

Mr. Andrzej made a donation in the form of cash to the parents' committee of the technical secondary school of economics. Due to the fact that the parent committee and the form of donation do not meet the conditions for deducting the donation in the annual tax return, Mr. Andrzej will not be able to deduct it.

How to show the donation to the school in the annual tax return?

A donation for the purposes of vocational training to public vocational schools can be deducted only in the annual tax return:

  • PIT-36 - a form submitted by a taxpayer conducting business activity subject to the tax scale,
  • PIT-36L - a form submitted by a taxpayer conducting business activity subject to flat tax,
  • PIT-28 - a form submitted by a taxpayer conducting business activity taxed with a lump sum on recorded income.

It should be noted that the amount of the donation may not, however, be higher than the amount representing 6% of the income. The deduction limit is shared with the deductions for public benefit donations, religious worship and honorary blood donation. The donation to the school is shown in Annex PIT / O, Part B, item 17 (if the taxpayer is present) or 18 (if the taxpayer is the spouse). Then indicate specifically for whom the donation was made in part D. - indicating the amount of the deduction and the data allowing the identification of the recipient. It should be emphasized that this relief will not be transferred to the following years. If the taxpayer does not use the deduction - the tax credit is forfeited. Example 6.

In 2020, Mr. Jarosław achieved an income of PLN 90 thousand. zlotys. As a donation for the purposes of vocational education, he provided computer teams previously included in his records of fixed assets with a value of PLN 15,000. zlotys. What value of the tax relief on this account will Mr. Jarosław be able to deduct?

Calculation of the allowance limit: PLN 90,000 * 6% = PLN 5,400

Due to the fact that the deduction limit is PLN 5,400, Mr. Jarosław will be able to deduct only PLN 5,400, despite the fact that the value of the donation is PLN 15,000. The relief will be shown in the PIT / O appendix in part B, item 17, and in part D, he will show the data of the gifted school.

Documents needed to deduct a donation to education

The basic document by which the donation is documented is the donation agreement (it should contain data identifying the donor, recipient and the value of the donation) and, in other specific cases, a declaration of acceptance of specific material goods. A free model of the donation agreement can be downloaded from the article: Donation agreement - template with overview. Therefore, in the case of a donation to the school, you must have a donation agreement and the said declaration.

Valuation of a donation to the school

For the purposes of the donation agreement, its value should be based on the market value of the things and rights covered by it (Article 26 (6) in conjunction with Article 19 of the PIT Act). In a situation where the donation concerns second-hand items, the valuation at non-market value, i.e. the value estimated without taking into account market prices, should result from the specific condition of the items.

If the transferred goods are taxed with VAT, the amount of the donation is their value together with this tax, in the part exceeding the amount of the input VAT, which the donor, in accordance with the provisions on VAT, has the right to deduct for the donation.

Donation to the school in the form of goods, equipment or a fixed asset

Making a donation - consequences in terms of PIT

If the goods, equipment or fixed assets have been included in the tax deductible costs, it is not possible to deduct the donation in the annual tax return. There are some exceptions, however. If the entrepreneur donates:

  • commercial goods - then it is necessary to write off the cost from col. 10, in which they were originally recognized, and then, after the donation, to recognize their transfer as a deduction,
  • fixed assets - it is not necessary to derecognise the depreciation write-offs recognized so far. At the same time, after the tangible asset is donated, it should be liquidated and no further deductible depreciation write-offs are recognized from the month in which the donation took place.

Making a donation - consequences in terms of VAT

A VAT donation is considered a supply of goods subject to VAT if the taxpayer was entitled, in whole or in part, to a reduction in the amount of tax due by the amount of the input tax on the purchase of these donated goods. If the taxpayer had the right to deduct VAT but did not use it, he still has to tax the donation. More on the VAT consequences can be found in the article: Donation in VAT - when is a free transfer associated with a tax?

Donation to the school and tax deductible costs - summary

Therefore, an entrepreneur who will donate to the school will not be able to include it directly in tax deductible costs and thus reduce the tax base on an ongoing basis. The settlement will be made only in the annual tax return using the PIT / O attachment.

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Donation to the school in the wFirma.pl system

In the wFirma.pl system, a taxpayer who made a donation to the school and meets the conditions necessary to deduct it in the annual tax return, will be able to do so directly on the PIT / O appendix on the PIT-36, PIT-36L and PIT-28 annual tax return. To generate an annual tax return, go to the tab START »TAXES» ANNUAL DECLARATIONS »ADD DECLARATION and then select one of the appropriate forms:

  • Annual income tax declaration on general terms (PIT 36),
  • Annual flat income tax declaration (PIT 36L),
  • Annual flat-rate income tax declaration (PIT 28).

In the window for defining attachments, select APPENDIX PIT / O (tax credits).

Then on the attachment in item in item 17 (if the taxpayer acts as a taxpayer) or 18 (if the taxpayer acts as a spouse), the amount of the donation should be supplemented.

In the next step, you should indicate specifically for whom the donation was made in part D.