the silver guide to non-monetary transactions

5.2.3. Donation of inherited work

A donor inherits a work of art valued at $1,500. Two years later, she donates the work to a registered charity. Before donating the artwork, the donor has it appraised at a value of $2,000.


Since the donor is donating the artwork within three years of having inherited it, the amount indicated on the charitable donation receipt receipt must correspond to the market value amount of the donation or its cost to the donor immediately before the donation was made, whichever is the lesser of the two. In this case, the cost to the donor at the time she inherited the work is deemed to be the fair market value of $1,500. Therefore, the amount of the receipt should be $1,500.

In addition to the information mentioned above, the charity must supply the following information on the receipt:

  • A description of the received goods;
  • The name and address of the appraiser, if applicable.