In the aftermath of the May 31, 2019, shooting in Virginia Beach, many individuals and businesses stepped up to donate money to help with the costs of medical care and funeral expenses for the 12 dead and four wounded. These kind-hearted citizens and businesses deserve to see tax deductions for their generous donations. Moreover, making donations to the Virginia Beach Tragedy Fund tax-deductible may also spur further donations.
The IRS rule against nonprofits being set up to benefit specific individuals is grounded in the agency’s need to guard against fraudulent nonprofits set up to enable tax-dodging. Instead of passing this one-time exemption to this IRS rule for the Virginia Beach Tragedy Fund, it’d be better for Congress to take up and debate an exemption to this IRS rule for all funds set up for the benefit of groups of victims.