How to reclaim tax on Gift Aid and other income

If you are a charity or a Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) you can claim back basic rate tax from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) on Gift Aid donations. You can also claim back tax deducted from other income such as bank or building society interest or tax deducted from income arising on gifts left to your charity in a will.

You'll find step-by-step guidance below on how to claim back tax in these situations, including how to apply to HMRC for recognition as a charity for tax purposes, nominating the individuals or agencies you wish to make the tax repayment claims for your charity or CASC, and how to fill in the relevant forms.

The guidance also covers special procedures for sponsored event claims and the time limits for making a claim.

On this page:

Step 1: Apply to HMRC for recognition as a charity or CASC for tax purposes

Before you can make a tax repayment claim on income that's already had Income Tax deducted from it - for example on Gift Aid donations or on other income such as bank/building society interest - you need to be recognised by HMRC as a charity for tax purposes, or as a CASC. Recognition by HMRC as a charity is a separate process from registering with the Charity Commission or another charity regulator for charitable status.

If your sports club is not a charity, it will have to register as a CASC with the HMRC CASC unit in order to be able to claim tax back on Gift Aid donations (provided it meets the conditions for registration as a CASC).

You apply to HMRC by completing a charity application or CASC registration form.

Once you're recognised by HMRC as a charity or CASC for tax purposes, HMRC will:

  • write and advise you of its decision and your charity or CASC tax reference number for use on all correspondence and claims
  • explain how to claim Gift Aid repayment
  • confirm the date from which your charity or CASC is eligible for claiming Gift Aid on donations

Find out about applying for recognition as a charity for tax purposes

Find out about registering as a Community Amateur Sports Club with HMRC

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Step 2: Nominate an authorised official and nominee

Before you can make a repayment claim you need to nominate someone in your charity or CASC to be an authorised official and, if you wish, someone to be a nominee. This means that they can submit repayment claims and receive money on behalf of your charity or CASC.

You can nominate anyone you consider suitable for these roles - for example, your treasurer, an employee or a trustee could be your authorised official and the charity's accountant or a claimant agency could be a nominee.

You must show your authorised official (and nominee if you appoint one) on your charity or CASC application form, (see Step 1) when first applying to HMRC. If these change, you must notify HMRC of the changes on form ChV1.

Use Form ChV1 to tell HMRC about any changes to authorised officials, other officials, nominees, bank account information, or to report any other changes to the charity or CASC details. When you've submitted a ChV1, please wait 30 days before submitting a repayment claim to HMRC, to give HMRC time to update your information.

Make sure you complete the forms in full and sign them. Failure to do so may delay your repayment claims.

Download the simple guide on how to complete Form ChV1 (PDF 1.1MB)

Detailed guide on how to complete Form ChV1 HMRC Charities Change of Details form

Go to form ChV1 Charities Change of Details form

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Step 3: Make a Gift Aid and tax repayment claim

There are three ways for charities and CASCs to claim tax repayments from HMRC charities:

Claim online using the Charities Online service

You can use an online form to file your repayment claim. You'll need to add information about the donations your charity receives onto a schedule spreadsheet, and attach it to your online claim form. To use the online claim form, your organisation needs to sign up to use HMRC Online Services, and enrol for the Charities Online service.

Find out more about making a claim using Charities Online

Claim online using third party software

If you want to make large claims (for over 1,000 donors at a time) you can also use external software to file claims directly from your own database.

Find out more about making a claim using Charities Online

Claim manually by using a paper claim form ChR1

If you don't have access to the internet, you can submit claims using a paper repayment claim form, Form ChR1. You can order the ChR1 from HMRC Charities Helpline.

You must use an original form for each claim. Please don't use photocopies as HMRC won't be about to process them. Fill in the paper form by hand, and return it by post to HMRC. The form is designed so that HMRC can automatically scan the information. You can send in as many paper forms as you like, there's no limit, but you can only claim for up to 90 Gift Aid donor details on each form.

Contact the HMRC Charities Helpline to order a ChR1 form

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Gift Aid claims for sponsored events

If your claim includes amounts received for sponsored events for which there are a large number of donors, you don't need to include all the individual donor details. Instead, there is a sponsored indicator you can set on the online claim. You then only need provide full details of the participant, (the person who did the sponsored event), the total of sponsored Gift Aid amount and the date of the sponsored event. But donations of £500 or more must be separated out from the total and listed separately on the claim. Ensure only the donations that the sponsor has indicated to include in Gift Aid are entered in the claim. You must still keep all of the original sponsor forms available for any review of your claim by HMRC.

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Gift Aid claim check

Once you've completed your online repayment claim, check it carefully as any incorrect information may delay your repayment.

For claims relating to sponsored events: have you restricted your claim to only those donations where the sponsorship form has been correctly completed and only included those sponsors who have confirmed they wish to Gift Aid their donation?

You should not send in any Gift Aid declarations with your claim, but you should keep them safe in case HMRC needs to check your claim.

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Time limits for making a claim

You can make a claim whenever you like, but there are certain time limits. Once the time limit for making a repayment claim to HMRC has passed you cannot make a claim on any tax paid before the time limit. However, charities or CASCs are eligible to receive interest on certain backdated repayment claims that are received by HMRC within the time limits.

Time limits for charitable trusts

Claims must be made no later than four years after the end of the tax year to which the claim relates. So, for donations made during the year ended 5 April 2010, the final date on which a Gift Aid repayment claim can be made to HMRC Charities is 5 April 2014.

Interest is payable from the 1 February following the year of assessment to which the income relates. For example for income received in the tax year ended 5 April 2010 interest is payable from 1 February 2011.

Time limits for all other charities and CASCs

Claims by CASCs and charitable companies must be made no later than four years after the end of the accounting period to which the claim relates.

For income received in the accounting period ended 31 December 2012 interest is payable from 1 January 2013.

Time limits for claims that qualify for transitional relief

Additional transitional relief was available on donations made between 6 April 2008 and 5 April 2011. To qualify for payment of Gift Aid transitional relief on donations made between 6 April 2008 and 5 April 2011, claims must be made within two years of the end of the charity's accounting period/tax year. You don't need to make a special claim for transitional relief, HMRC will pay it automatically along with your Gift Aid tax repayment.

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Receiving a repayment

When can you expect your repayment?

This depends on how you have claimed. Claims made online are normally paid in a few days but can take up to 15 days in certain circumstances. Notification that the claim has been paid is sent to you in the post so please allow three weeks for the claim to be paid before calling HMRC. Calling before this time will not speed up the payment of your claim.

Claims made using form ChR1 will take longer as you will need to allow time for the claim form to reach HMRC, 15 working days for HMRC to process your form if everything is in order and further time for the payment to reach you. So, please allow four to five weeks for your claim to be paid before calling to check progress. Calling before this time will not speed up the payment of your claim.

If this is your first claim, you should allow a further two weeks for payment to be made.

If you make any mistakes or leave gaps on your form, HMRC may have to contact you or make further enquiries which can cause delays and may mean you wait longer for your payment.

What to do if your repayment is wrong?

If you follow the steps in this guide you should receive the right amount of repayment at the right time. However, if you have made an incorrect claim, or you have received a payment for more than the amount you claimed that is not explained, make an appropriate adjustment on your next claim in the adjustments section of the online claim, or contact HMRC Charities immediately to arrange to repay any money overpaid to you.

Some examples of when you may need to repay money to HMRC:

  • You realise you have claimed for the same donation twice.
  • The donor has told you that their circumstances have changed and the donation no longer qualifies for Gift Aid as there is insufficient tax to cover the donation.
  • The donor has withdrawn their declaration.

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Contacting HMRC Charities

For more help you can contact HMRC Charity Helpline.

Contact details for HMRC Charities Helpline

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More useful links

Gift Aid record keeping and audit requirements

Gift Aid declarations

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