Can I donate a "sunset cruise" to a charity auction??? - Page 2 - SailNet Community

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  #11  
Old 08-07-2010
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Originally Posted by Stillraining View Post
Edit: Id be very Leary
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Old 08-07-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnRPollard View Post
Brad,

Not sure if you're talking about tax issues, or other issues?

For personal federal taxes, you can only write-off the incidental costs you incur for the charity cruise. E.g., if you provide a meal and drinks, you can write-off these expenses. But you can't write-off what it would cost to charter a similar boat for the day, nor even an amortized cost of your own boat.

We have donated a trip on our boat many times for private auctions at school event. As far as liability, I checked with our insurance company and they said there were no issues, since we were not being "hired" or payed for the donated trip. In other words, they said we'd be covered no differently than we'd be if we took some friends out for a sail.

Incidentally, two years in a row our donated boat trip netted the most of any offerings at the silent auction. We made sure to provide a real nice picnic meal (prepared by a caterer) with soft drinks, and were able to write-off these expenses.

Our experience is the same as was the advice of our insurance guy.

( I wonder if the donation is considered differently for a 'non-profit' vs. 'for profit' organization. We stick to non-profit stuff.)
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Old 08-07-2010
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I also remember a few years back either in the Professional Mariner or American Captain magazine a case just like what we are talking about. After the accident, the good Capt. was testifying that he received no money for his part sunset cruise. However he did testified that he wrote his time and boat expenses off on his Taxes as a chartable deduction to the tune of a couple hundred dollars an hour. The court found that by writing off his time he did hold himself out to be a professional Capt. The rest of the story got very ugly for the Good Capt who was just trying to do a good deed.
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  #14  
Old 08-07-2010
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USCG regs...You must be or have a Captains License to charter. Bubb2 is correct on the license and the insurance.

I would not do it,too many leagal issues that may grow teeth
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Old 08-07-2010
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Originally Posted by bubb2 View Post
I also remember a few years back either in the Professional Mariner or American Captain magazine a case just like what we are talking about. After the accident, the good Capt. was testifying that he received no money for his part sunset cruise. However he did testified that he wrote his time and boat expenses off on his Taxes as a chartable deduction to the tune of a couple hundred dollars an hour. The court found that by writing off his time he did hold himself out to be a professional Capt. The rest of the story got very ugly for the Good Capt who was just trying to do a good deed.

When he effectively paid himself for his time as bolded above, he clearly crossed the legal line. I'm willing to bet this is the difference between a donation and a paid charter.
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Old 08-07-2010
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Originally Posted by puddinlegs View Post
When he effectively paid himself for his time as bolded above, he clearly crossed the legal line. I'm willing to bet this is the difference between a donation and a paid charter.
I'm willing to bet it's not.

The passengers have paid money to purchase the cruise regardless of whether the captain receives compensation in the form of a deduction.
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Old 08-07-2010
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Originally Posted by lydanynom View Post
I'm willing to bet it's not.

The passengers have paid money to purchase the cruise regardless of whether the captain receives compensation in the form of a deduction.
check bubb2's post above, where it says:

Quote:
The “for hire” definition isn’t as clear as it could be, but if consideration is paid as a condition of carriage, it’s pretty clear that a license is required. A gray area arises, however, when we look at who is receiving the consideration.

The donated fishing trips described by our reader will award a day aboard a boat to the winning bidder at the charity auction. This presents an interesting scenario because the passenger is paying for the trip, but the money is going to a charity rather than to the owner of the boat.
As noted above, a licensed captain is required when the economic benefit directly or indirectly flows to “the owner or any other person having an interest in the vessel.” In this case, since the charity (presumably) has no interest at all in the vessel, a license would not be required — even if the charitable gift is a condition of carriage.
that said, still would not recommend doing it.
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  #18  
Old 08-07-2010
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Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
check bubb2's post above, where it says:

[stuff]

that said, still would not recommend doing it.
Yeah, I'm sorry, I was thinking more about liability than licensing. I think you're probably right about that.
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Although certain that this is for a good cause you better get the insurance company to put it in writing before you auction the cruise. 99/100 times no problems will probably arise and all is well. The charity makes money, the buyer has a great experience, and the boat owner can write it off and feel good about it.

1/100 someone falls and cracks their skull, falls overboard and is stressed, or someone drowns. The buyer then either collects from your insurance company, or you and your insurance company, or you alone. They may buy a cruise and end up owning your boat.

I would not worry about the CG giving you grief as it is charitable and most likely you get a warning. However, the liability issue is way to risky in my opinion. We know our friends when they come on board or in our house. Even then, there have been many cases where the friendship ended when the injured party saw the $$$$$ signs. Now you are taking a stranger out?

I know people that have done it. To my knowledge none of them have had issues.I have done it but my boat is in a charter program part time AND I make certain that a captain is on board to cover my ass. Proceed at your own risk...but let us know how it turns out if you do it.
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Old 08-07-2010
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Being prudent is an admirable trait and those that urge caution have good reason to do so. However, I chose not to let fear of legal entanglements dictate my actions. Of course, my father did tell me I was a rash youth.
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