January 6, 2010 at 11:42 pm #591062
Hi YWN chevra!
poll time, how many of you actual take detail notes of what you make a give to charity?
give but don’t keep a real chesbun?
don’t really give much for whatever reason?
also if you care to share has your giving changed since the recession?
and last but not least what percent of income do you think you give to charity?
January 7, 2010 at 1:21 am #671780
If you take each paycheck, deduct 10% off the top, put it in a separate bank account and then use that account for all your tzedaka payments, you will be sure to always give a maaser. That doesn’t stop you, of course, from giving a little more, up to 20%, but you get the idea.
January 7, 2010 at 7:10 am #671781
The Best BubbyParticipant
We do exactly what oomis1105 advised. Take 10% off the pay and deposit in another account to use for zedakah. This way there is no mistake about how much maaser you have to give. Maaser is maaser and has to be given even in difficult times. You can give more if possible but, never less than 10%. The seperate bank account helps you to know what you have always. Be matzliach, you should always have, to always give others.
January 7, 2010 at 7:23 am #671782
We keep a detailed notebook.
January 7, 2010 at 2:09 pm #671783
We tried having a sep checking account for Maaser but it became too complicated, when org. didnt deposit the checks right away, we had a hard time keeping track.
I think keeping a notebook is is the safest way. We write down out monthly sallaries combined, figure out maaser and mark down to whom we paid it. It is time consuming but so is building a sukkah and cooking for guests!
January 7, 2010 at 3:00 pm #671784
interesting that so far 100% actually keep a detailed record, i would have thought ppl just give when the need arises. i would like more ppl to reply 🙁
January 7, 2010 at 3:01 pm #671785
May I suggest changing the name of this thread to Maaser, as masser has different meanings?
January 7, 2010 at 4:17 pm #671786
Poster, it is not your responsibility to see if the person you gave tzedaka to, used it or not, deposited the check, or whatever. Do you keep track of how EVERYONE spends the money you give them (and it could be cash, too)? You have an achrayus to give tzedaka, and we take that to be maaser, because of the halacha of maaser. But you cannot control what someone does after the money leaves your hands. If you think that you have to be worried about that, then ask your rov if you are not considered to have given tzedaka if you give a check and it is not cashed. If that is true, you should only give cash to people.
My son and daughter-in-law use their maaser money (besides giving regular tzedaka donations) when they go to Chinese Auctions. If they actually win something, then they take the same amount of money that the winning ticket cost them, and give it to tzedaka a second time, because they don’t feel they gave tzedaka when they won something. So if they bought a $20 ticket and put it in the box for a trip to Florida and they win the trip – they give another $20 to Tzedaka. When they actually won a cash award from the auction, they gave maaser on THAT award as well.
Now here’s a question, and I am curious as to your responses. It is a little related to this topic, but in a different vein. If you enter a contest from a Yeshivah or Shul at a Chinese Auction to win, let’s say for argument’s sake, $20,000 cash, do you think it’s ok for the institution to deduct a maaser from the amount and only pay out $18,000 to you(no small piece of change, of course)? Do you feel that they should or should not be expecting that maaser money to go back to their mossad? Should the winner be allowed to decide for himself where he prefers to give his maaser money, or should he fargin them the 10%? Is it ethical for them to deduct it in advance without asking, or is this the norm?
January 7, 2010 at 4:44 pm #671787
to moderator i would humbly ask that this question be posted as a new topic, because we’re going to go way off the way ppl give masser versus what a yeshiva can do once you win.
to oomis1105 i would say the same maybe start a new topic for this question.
as far as an answer goes they have no right to take anything from your winnings unless it was in the fine print, on a side note rccs had an auction recently i took out a ck and was going to donate 360.00 but saw the fine print saying they can use my name or picture for advertisements (if i won) i for one didn’t like the idea and threw the ck away.
January 7, 2010 at 5:06 pm #671788
Spreadsheet, with a seperate account.
I also include every donation. It makes it easy to compare to what was given last year.
January 7, 2010 at 5:46 pm #671789
Separate notebook, each donation marked separately, with periodic adjustments for taxes (or tax refunds) and business expenses – I used to track pushke donations, but then I figured I do not want H’KBH to be so meticulous when He calculates my salary, so I stopped – most months I am able meet my obligations, but I always try to enter Rosh HaShanna with a zero balance on my obligations – for a long time I kept up with ma’aser, then things changed and I simply could not (we do not eat out, we do not wear fancy clothes, we do not have new “home electronics” or fancy cell phones) – thank G-d, things came around and I am now able to meet my obligations – I think of it as insurance – G-d keeps me employed so that I can give tzedakah – I mostly give to local mosdos, but I would estimate that 5-10% of my ma’aser goes to national (non-Jewish) medical research organizations such as cancer, etc. – we yidden get those diseases, too, so I feel obligated to assist in that reasearch
January 7, 2010 at 6:24 pm #671790
the times that you couldn’t give did you just not give or did you write down what you would have given and tried to give it later?
January 7, 2010 at 6:36 pm #671791
The institution should not be deducting the amount without your approval. Also, don’t forget, the total amount is taxable and ma’aser is after taxes.
January 7, 2010 at 7:20 pm #671792
telegrok, There are so many Jewish org. that are in dire need of funds. what would make you give your money elsewhere?
January 7, 2010 at 7:40 pm #671793
Not only that but in most cases a chinese auction is not tax deductible. Consult the IRS for more information.
January 7, 2010 at 9:14 pm #671794
Chesedname: I think I continued to keep track of what I owed, and I eventually was able to even everything out – but for a while I really had no expectation of ever being able to do so – it’s not easy – I consider myself very blessed that I am able to do this now, and I would never think poorly of someone who cannot –
Poster: the vast majority (I’d say about 95%) of my ma’aser stays within “the community,” with most in town, some to Israel, some to out-of-town places that have caught my eye – but I do give to the American Cancer Society and other medical research institutions because I have friends and family members who have benefited from the research these organizations do – I do not think that their care would have been less if my donation was not there, or that my donation will lead to the breakthrough (I’m not giving those millions) – but I do not feel right about taking advantage of their benefits without giving back, at least something – what does it say in Pirkei Avos – it’s not our place to complete the job, but we’re not exempt from trying, anyway –
January 7, 2010 at 9:21 pm #671795
truthsharer, but the org still gives you a receipt.
telegrok, I undertand.
January 8, 2010 at 5:49 am #671796
I keep track in a spreadsheet. When I make money I enter how much I earned and how much of it should go to Maaser, I usually round up a bit to make it a little more than 10%. I then add all donations I give into the spreadsheet and it calculates how much I owe, how much I gave, and how much I have left to give. I can then look back next year to see how much I gave to each cause, etc.
I try to make it work with taxes, if the take taxes off a paycheck it’s easy because I juts have to enter how much I actually got. If I get a refund I will count that as money made, and if I have to actually pay taxes I will enter it as negative income so taht I will then owe less in maaser
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