I give my mother (a senior citizen) USD$200 amount per month. Can that be deducted from my Federal income tax return?

We're both US citizens and my mother receives Social Security.


No. See IRS Publication 526, https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p526.pdf, page 6, "Contributions You Can't Deduct". The very first thing listed is, "You can't deduct as a charitable contribution: 1.A contribution to a specific individual." You can only deduct contributions to charities that have filed appropriate paperwork and registered with the IRS, or that are in categories recognized by the IRS. Unless you mean that your mother runs a recognized charity and when you say that you gave her money, you mean that you gave money to the charity that she runs. But I don't think that's what you meant.


The answer is "No" assuming your mother is not a qualified charity. You can find more details here on the IRS website.

Even if she were a qualified charity only a small number of people can deduct charitable giving these days with the latest changes to the tax code. You have to be able to itemize your deductions and with the increase in the standard deduction most are better off taking the standard deduction.

Now, what is possible is that you can claim her as a dependent. However, depending upon your level of support, it may do more harm than good. Again with the 2017 changes, deductions for dependents have been eliminated. Here is a site that will give you more information about that without revealing sensitive income information to the rest of the world.

  • 1
    Pete, I moved the link. You can roll back, no issue. As you linked, it seemed you were suggesting an article warning against sharing personal info vs 'more information'. Jan 28 '20 at 15:36
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    @JTP-ApologisetoMonica always open to suggestions to improve my writing, thanks.
    – Pete B.
    Jan 28 '20 at 17:09
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    The second paragraph is too speculative; for the OP, X might be large enough to make itemizing worthwhile (again, if it were a deductible contribution).
    – chepner
    Jan 28 '20 at 19:16

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