Small Business Glossary

DGR - Deductible Gift Recipient

A Deductible Gift Recipient, or DGR, is an organisation endorsed by the ATO to receive tax-deductible donations.

In the world of small businesses, understanding the intricacies of financial terms and tax-related concepts is crucial. One such term that holds significant importance is 'DGR - Deductible Gift Recipient'. This term, though seemingly complex, can be simplified and understood with a little bit of effort and guidance.

The term 'DGR - Deductible Gift Recipient' refers to an organisation or fund that can receive tax-deductible gifts. In Australia, these organisations are typically non-profit entities that have been endorsed by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) as a deductible gift recipient (DGR).

Understanding DGR - Deductible Gift Recipient

At its core, a DGR is an entity that has been approved by the ATO to receive tax-deductible gifts. This means that when a person or business makes a donation to a DGR, they can deduct the amount of that donation from their taxable income, thereby reducing their tax liability.

However, not all non-profit organisations are DGRs. To become a DGR, an organisation must apply to the ATO and meet specific requirements. These requirements vary depending on the type of organisation, but generally, they must be non-profit and carry out activities that benefit the community.

Types of DGRs

There are several types of DGRs, each with its own set of requirements. The most common types include public benevolent institutions (PBIs), health promotion charities (HPCs), environmental organisations, cultural organisations, and overseas aid funds.

Each type of DGR has its own specific requirements that must be met in order to be endorsed by the ATO. For example, a PBI must be a non-profit institution that provides direct relief to people who are in need, while an HPC must promote the prevention or control of diseases in humans.

Benefits of Being a DGR

Being a DGR comes with a number of benefits, the most significant of which is the ability to receive tax-deductible gifts. This can be a major incentive for individuals and businesses to donate to the organisation, as they can reduce their tax liability in the process.

Additionally, DGRs may also be eligible for certain grants and funding opportunities that are not available to non-DGR organisations. This can provide a valuable source of income for the organisation and help it to carry out its mission.

How to Become a DGR

Becoming a DGR is not a straightforward process, and it requires a thorough understanding of the ATO's requirements. The first step is to determine which category of DGR your organisation falls under. This will dictate the specific requirements you need to meet.

Once you have determined your category, you will need to apply to the ATO for endorsement as a DGR. This involves providing detailed information about your organisation and its activities, as well as demonstrating how you meet the requirements for your category.

Application Process

The application process for becoming a DGR can be complex and time-consuming. It involves filling out a number of forms and providing detailed information about your organisation. This includes information about your organisation's structure, its activities, and how it benefits the community.

Once your application has been submitted, it will be reviewed by the ATO. If your application is successful, your organisation will be endorsed as a DGR and you will be able to start receiving tax-deductible gifts. If your application is unsuccessful, you will be given the opportunity to provide additional information or appeal the decision.

Meeting Ongoing Requirements

Once an organisation has been endorsed as a DGR, it must meet ongoing requirements to maintain its endorsement. This includes keeping detailed records of all donations received, ensuring that the organisation continues to carry out activities that benefit the community, and complying with all relevant laws and regulations.

If an organisation fails to meet these requirements, it may lose its DGR endorsement. This can have significant implications, as it may affect the organisation's ability to receive donations and access certain grants and funding opportunities.

Donating to a DGR

Donating to a DGR can be a great way to support a cause you care about while also reducing your tax liability. However, it's important to understand the rules and requirements associated with making a tax-deductible donation.

Firstly, not all donations are tax-deductible. In order to be tax-deductible, a donation must be a gift of money or property to a DGR. This means that you cannot receive any benefit in return for your donation. For example, if you make a donation and receive a ticket to a charity event in return, your donation may not be tax-deductible.

Claiming a Tax Deduction

If you make a donation to a DGR, you can claim a tax deduction in your income tax return. The amount you can claim is the amount of the donation, as long as it is $2 or more. You will need to keep a record of your donation, such as a receipt, in order to claim the deduction.

It's important to note that the tax deduction does not reduce your taxable income dollar for dollar. Instead, it reduces the amount of tax you have to pay. For example, if you are in the 37% tax bracket and you make a donation of $100, you will reduce your tax by $37, not $100.

Donation Receipts

When you make a donation to a DGR, you should receive a receipt for your donation. This receipt should include the name of the DGR, the amount of the donation, the date of the donation, and a statement that the donation is a gift.

You will need to keep this receipt as proof of your donation. If you are audited by the ATO, you may need to provide this receipt to substantiate your claim for a tax deduction.


Understanding the concept of DGR - Deductible Gift Recipient is crucial for both small businesses and individuals alike. Whether you're an organisation seeking DGR status, or an individual or business looking to make a donation, a thorough understanding of this term can help you navigate the financial landscape more effectively.

Remember, while the process of becoming a DGR or making a donation may seem complex, the benefits can be significant. Not only can it provide financial advantages, but it can also enable you to make a meaningful contribution to a cause you care about.

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