Bracing for a Downturn: Nonprofits, Charitable Deduction Worries, and How Foundations Can Help

On January 1, 2018, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act went into effect, providing significant tax reductions for both individuals and corporations and doubling the amount of the standard deduction that individuals can claim in their tax returns. How are nonprofit and foundation leaders viewing the implications of this legislation? What role can funders play in helping grantees respond to it?

In January and February 2018, CEP surveyed nonprofit and foundation leaders to gain insights into these questions. Based on survey responses from 170 nonprofit CEOs and 187 foundation staff who hold the highest level of responsibility for programmatic work at their foundations, Bracing for a Downturn: Nonprofits, Charitable Deduction Worries, and How Foundations Can Help finds that a majority of nonprofit and foundation leaders are concerned about a potential decrease in charitable giving as a result of the new tax law.

To help in this time of concern, nonprofit and foundation leaders both suggest that foundations can provide advice and assistance to support nonprofits’ fundraising and financial sustainability efforts, as well as play an educational role with nonprofits and donors about the effects of the legislation. Some nonprofit leaders also suggest foundations can help by promoting the importance of nonprofits and their work to donors and the public.

May 2018

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