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Charities have until 5 April to find estimated £564mn in unclaimed Gift Aid

Melanie May | 22 February 2023 | News

Swiftaid Great Gift Aid Hunt

Charities have until 5 April to search for any unclaimed Gift Aid for this tax year – an amount HMRC has estimated is as much as £564mn.

While Gift Aid declarations for this tax year can be collected after this date, it then becomes a more complicated process.

Swiftaid has launched the ‘Great Gift Aid Hunt‘ to encourage charities to make sure they don’t miss out. It offers a quick way for charities to check against over 5 million UK taxpayers to find missed Gift Aid. By sending in donation information from the current tax year, Swiftaid can match it with millions of UK taxpayers, and if a match is found, 25% more Gift Aid is added.

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The platform is ISO-accredited and works closely with HMRC and the Charity Tax Group to maximise Gift Aid. It is also compliant with GDPR requirements.

Beth Michael, Co-Founder of Swiftaid, said:

“With the cost of living continuing to rise, it’s important that charities can increase their income without putting additional financial strain on their donors. Think of what a much-needed boost of 25% income could do for your charity. Through a simple upload of donation data, this converts to extra income without costing extra to donors. Swiftaid acts on behalf of over 5 million UK taxpayers. Charities can now simply check against these individuals for Gift Aid that was previously missed.”

It estimates every year, around £564 million is missed, which could pay for:

Oliver Shaw-Latimer, Senior Director of Innovation at JustGiving, which has partnered with Swiftaid, commented:

“Processing Gift Aid is often a huge administrative burden and can be very costly for charities. Swiftaid validates donors’ information, compiles claims and submits them directly to HMRC, which removes time-consuming administration at a time when fundraising teams are under increasing pressure due to the cost-of-living crisis. Since partnering with Swiftaid last year we’ve added over five million taxpayers to the network and recovered over £400,000 in missed Gift Aid for charities.”

Gift Aid is all the more valuable under the current circumstances: a recent survey by Pro Bono Economics and Nottingham Trent University found that half of charities believe winter demand will exceed their ability to cope and just under 1 in 5 charities will cut services. This is combined with a decline in the number of people giving to charity in the UK, according to research from the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF). Between January and April 2022, an estimated 4.9 million fewer people said they donated to charity or sponsored someone in the previous year, compared to 2019.

Daniel Fluskey, Director of Policy and Communications at Chartered Institute of Fundraising, commented:

“Fundraisers are doing brilliant work to inspire support from donors and the public, but they are doing so in the face of a really difficult set of circumstances. In the middle of a cost of living crisis, it’s more important than ever to make sure that charities are getting the full value of every donation made to them. The potential amount of Gift Aid out there can make a significant boost to the work of charities and we want to see every pound that is eligible for Gift Aid claimed to help support good causes.”

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