College Access Tax Credit Fund

Tis the Season To Be Charitable…The CA College Access Tax Credit Fund Provides HUGE TAX BENEFIT on BOTH Federal and California tax returns

The College Access Tax Credit Fund is a program that helps fund California’s Cal Grant B program, which gives money for books and living expenses to low-income college students. For tax years 2014 through 2017, a contribution to this plan provides a significant tax benefit on an indivdual taxpayer’s Federal AND Calfornia tax returns. There is no explicit limit on the amount a taxpayer may contribute, but the contributions must be made in cash.

What are tax benefits

  • For Federal Purposes, the donation will be taken as a charitable donation if the taxpayer qualifies to itemize deductions
  • For California Purposes, the TAX CREDIT is awardable as follows:
    • for 2014, 60% of the amount contributed
    • for 2015, 55% of the amount contributed
    • for 2016, 50% of the amount contributed

Why is a Tax Credit better than a Deduction?

A credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction on the tax bill. For example, a $10,000 donation to the fund in 2014 would reduce California taxes by $6,000.

How To Qualify for this Tax Benefit

  • Complete CA State Treasurer Online Application
  • CA Educational Facilities Authority will review your Application & send you a written response within 10 days
  • If approved, taxpayer can send in the money within 20 days and will qualify for Federal AND CA tax benefit in the year of donation

The maximum aggregate amount of tax credits that can be allocated and certified by CEFA each calendar year is $500 million. Applications for the tax credit will be processed on a first come, first served basis so it benefits you to make your donations ASAP.


For more info, visit the California Educational Facilities Authority webpage.

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