Trump charity admits in filing to ‘self-dealing’
Violations of IRS ban carry penalties
President-elect Donald Trump’s charitable foundation has admitted to the IRS that it violated a legal prohibition against “self-dealing,” which bars nonprofit leaders from using their charity’s money to help themselves, their businesses or their families.
The admission was contained in the Donald J. Trump Foundation’s IRS tax filings for 2015, which were recently posted online at the nonprofit-tracking site GuideStar. A GuideStar spokesman said the forms were uploaded by the Trump Foundation’s law firm, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.
The Washington Post could not confirm if the same forms had been sent to the IRS.
In one section of the form, the IRS asked if the Trump Foundation had transferred “income or assets to a disqualified person.” A disqualified person, in this context, might be Trump — the foundation’s president — or a member of his family or a Trump-owned business.
The foundation checked “yes.”
Another line on the form asked if the Trump Foundation had engaged in any acts of self-dealing in prior years. The Trump Foundation checked “yes” again.
Such violations can carry penalties including excise taxes, and the charity leaders can be required to repay money that the charity spent on their behalf.
During the presidential campaign, The Post reported on several instances in which Trump appeared to use the Trump Foundation’s money to buy items for himself or to help one of his for-profit The admission was contained in the Donald J. Trump Foundation’s IRS tax filings for 2015. businesses.
It was unclear if these admissions were connected to the instances reported in The Post.
The Trump Foundation tax forms did not, for instance, describe any specific acts of self-dealing. They also did not say whether Trump had paid any penalties already. That kind of detail would be submitted on a separate IRS form, which was not included in the information posted online by GuideStar.
Trump’s team did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.
The New York attorney general’s office is investigating Trump’s charity, following up on reports in The Post that described apparent instances of self-dealing going back to 2007. A spokesman for Attorney General Eric Schneiderman declined to comment, other than to say “our investigation is ongoing.”
The IRS has not said if it is investigating the presidentelect’s charity.
The Trump Foundation