The “Refund Policy for Non-Profit Donations” of Ignita Veritas United (IVU) and its affiliated institutions meets or exceeds all accepted universal international standards. This policy directly mirrors the policies of other major non-profit organizations.
Fundraising Terms – The primary contractual framework for donations to fundraising campaigns supporting court cases for human rights is established in the legal policy statement “Fundraising for International Court Cases” on this website.
Policy Statements – The general framework of all contractual relations for online transactions with Ignita Veritas United (IVU) is established in the legal policy statements “Terms and Conditions” and “Return and Refund Policy” on this website.
Generally, IVU will not refund a donation which has been knowingly and voluntarily given by the donor for the intended charitable purposes.
Donations are refunded in Limited Circumstances, only if made unknowingly by unauthorized use of a lost or stolen credit card, or by administrative error of accidental double payment or a wrong amount (for which the difference can be refunded), if notified within the 30 day billing cycle.
A refund may also be made for a recurring monthly donation charged which was previously cancelled.
For donations in connection with a fundraising campaign of Organization, a refund may be made only in the following Special Circumstances:
If Special Circumstances could ever arise, where the relevant IVU institution or affiliate is unable to use funds raised for a specific purpose, or such specific purpose has not been fulfilled in accordance with written terms and conditions of the fundraising campaign, the donation may be refunded, if it remains available to be released back to the donor.
However, no refund is possible if the donation has already been applied to a charitable purpose, whether a declared specific purpose or closely related supporting purpose.
In all circumstances, refunds of donations will be at the discretion of IVU.
For substantial amounts, any refund may have to be made after other new donations are received for IVU or its affiliates, for funds to be available.
As a non-profit organization, IVU reserves the right to deduct any bank fees or transaction charges relating to a donation from the amount of any refund.
The general Common Law rule, enacted in American and British Commonwealth law, is that non-profit organizations are required to use all donations in the public interest for the declared or closely related charitable purposes, at the time each donation is made, and thus refunds would harm the public good and are generally not permitted by law.
Because of the urgency and priority of the humanitarian missions of IVU and its affiliate institutions, and the strong public interest of all other donors for missions to be implemented as quickly as possible, all donations are applied to the charitable purposes almost immediately.
Accordingly, for refunds in Special Circumstances, IVU will make best efforts to maintain a limited reserve for refunds, up to 7 days after each batch of donations from fundraising, after which it will not be possible to make any refunds.
Therefore, any refund of a donation in Special Circumstances must be requested within 7 calendar days from the date of payment.
The “Refund Policy for Non-Profit Donations” of Ignita Veritas United (IVU) and its affiliated institutions meets or exceeds all international standards. The following summaries, quoting law and policies of other major non-profits, evidence that the IVU policy strictly follows all universally accepted best practices for non-profits.
The national accounting firm Kirsch CPA Group (of Certified Public Accountants) advises non-profits on relevant United States law as follows :
“There is no federal law that requires nonprofits to return donations. [And] individual states… laws are vague about returning contributions. But they usually assume that a gift is no longer the property of a donor once a charity accepts it.”
“What’s more, organizations are expected to act in the public interest. Thus, state regulators may rule that returning a donation harms the public good [and] is unreasonable”.
The United Kingdom Charities Act 2011 defines the Common Law rules on the use of funds for non-profit donations, which is the basis for laws of the 56 Commonwealth Countries :
At the moment when “every relevant donation [is] made to or in favour of the charity… or otherwise for the purposes of the charity”, the donation “takes effect [for] the incorporated body [chartered organization]… for the same purposes” (Section 253). Thus, all donations once made must be used for a “charitable purpose”.
“All conditions” for use of funds for the charitable purposes “in any certificate of incorporation [charter] are binding upon and must be performed or observed by the charity trustees” (Section 255). Thus, the organization is legally required to use all donations for the declared purposes at the time each is made.
A “charitable purpose” is defined as “for the public benefit” (Section 2(1)(b)), and includes “advancement” of “education”, “community development”, “culture and heritage” and “human rights” (Section 3).
The charitable purpose may be “modified” by using donations for “other charitable purposes” which are “similar in character” or reasonably related to the original purpose for the public benefit (Section 275).
The Red Cross in the United Kingdom, summarizing the law quoted above, declares :
“Under charity law (the Charities Act 2011), charities are not permitted to refund donations, other than in specific circumstances [of] errors”.
The Red Cross in New Zealand declares : Donations are refunded mostly only for “unauthorized use of a credit card”. “In all circumstances, refunds of donations will be at our discretion.”
If “we are unable to use funds raised for a specific purpose… we may refund these donations.” However, no refund is possible “if the donation has already been applied to a charitable purpose”.
The Barnardos children’s charity in New Zealand declares : Donations are refunded mostly only for “unauthorized use of a credit card”. “In all circumstances, refunds of donations will be at [our] discretion”.
If “funds [are] raised for a specific purpose that has not been fulfilled… as agreed”, there may be a refund if the donation “is available to be released back to the donor.” However, no refund is possible if “the donation… has already been applied to a charitable purpose”.
The British Amnesty International charity declares : “Donations… can only be refunded” for “an administrative error” such as “accidentally” making a double payment or an “error” in the donation amount. No refunds are made in any other circumstances.
The UN Refugee Agency “UNHCR” declares : “Generally, a donation is, like all charitable donations, not refundable.” A refund is only given if “made unknowingly” with “a stolen or lost card”, or by a “monthly donation” which was accidental or previously cancelled.
Only “if there was an error” of “the wrong amount” notified within 30 days, the overcharge amount can be refunded.
“As your donation received is swiftly employed to [charitable] operations, [we] will not be able to refund any donations” after a number of days “in all situations”.
The UN Children’s Fund “UNICEF” in Australia declares : “We will not refund a donation that has been knowingly and voluntarily given to us.” Thus, a refund is only given if made unknowingly with a lost or stolen card, or by a monthly payment which was accidental or previously canceled.
Only if “an error in the donation amount [is] detected” and notified within a limited time period, the overcharge amount can be refunded.
Also, “[as] a non-profit charity… we reserve the right to deduct any bank or transaction charges for any refund”.
 Kirsch CPA Group, When Should Not-for-Profit Organizations Return Donations, Ohio, United States (07 January 2021) (Link).
 United Kingdom, Charities Act 2011 (Link).
 British Red Cross, Donation FAQs, “Can an online Donation be Refunded”, London, United Kingdom (Link).
 New Zealand Red Cross, Donation Terms & Conditions, “Donations Refund Policy”, Wellington, New Zealand (Link).
 Barnardos, Donations Terms and Conditions, “Donations Refund Policy”, Wellington, New Zealand (Link).
 Amnesty International, Refunds of Donations, London, United Kingdom (Link).
 UNHCR, Online Donation Refund Policy, New York, United States (Link).
 UNICEF, Refund Procedure, “Donations and Refunds”, New South Wales, Australia (Link).
You cannot copy content of this page