Debate: How can government make it easier to claim Gift Aid on digital donations?

The Treasury has launched a consultation on proposals to simplify the scheme for donors giving online

Jane Tully is head of policy and public affairs at the Charity Finance Group

Jane Tully is head of policy and public affairs at the Charity Finance GroupIn an ideal world, HM Revenue & Customs would support a universal Gift Aid database that charities could cross-check donors against, and the main online payment facilitators, such as the banks and Visa, would automate Gift Aid on accounts and cards. In terms of more achievable outcomes, making the Gift Aid declaration and requirements shorter and simpler is critical, as is allowing process and payment intermediaries to provide a single opt-in for donors that allows Gift Aid to be reclaimed on all donations the donor makes through that platform.

Tom Latchford is chief executive of Raising IT

Tom Latchford is chief executive of Raising ITBringing Gift Aid online has been a long-awaited change, but the government needs to make great strides to simplify the user experience. Too much staff time is spent on administration.

To bring about 'one-click' Amazon-type payments, with Gift-Aid eligibility stored, requires technology firms to upgrade databases and create add-ons. Sadly, there has been too little support from the government on this. The best solution would be a central database of donors with Gift Aid eligibility, but this seems fantastical, given how long it has taken the government to start modernising the system.

Daniel Fluskey is head of policy and research at the Institute of Fundraising

Daniel Fluskey is head of policy and research at the Institute of FundraisingDigital donations will become increasingly important as it becomes easier for people to give through a range of channels. The potential of shortening the model declaration could make a real difference - not just for digital giving, but for all donations.

The existing model declaration runs to 91 words - a more concise statement would work better for online donations, as well as for paper-based Gift Aid declarations. Simplifying the declaration - in the right way - would make it much easier for fundraisers to raise money through Gift Aid.

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