Question from Mark: I have a very important question for you, Rick.
How much is Facebook’s cut of all the money that’s donated to charity to honor someone’s birthday?
I’ve heard they keep half of it. If that’s true it should be illegal in my opinion.
I’d really like to know the answer to this because I’ve made several donations in the recent past.
Rick’s answer: I agree that it would be absolutely unconscionable for Facebook to keep half of all the money people donate to charitable organizations, Mark. But truth be told, they don’t.
Luckily, the person that gave you that information was terribly wrong.
In reality, Facebook doesn’t keep a single penny of the charitable contributions that are made though their website.
If you click on the Donations to Charitable Organizations link on this page you’ll see that Facebook doesn’t charge any fees at all when donations are made to any qualified charitable organization.
However, they do charge a small fee when someone runs a personal fundraiser (i.e. when the person or organization benefiting from the fundraiser isn’t a qualifying charity).
The purpose of those fees is to cover the expenses Facebook incurs for running the fundraiser, plus any applicable taxes.
You can see a list of the fees they charge for personal fundraisers by clicking the Donations to Personal Fundraisers link on the same page I linked to above.
Bottom line: As you can see for yourself, Facebook doesn’t charge any fees whatsoever when someone runs a fundraiser for a qualified charity.
What’s more, the very modest fees Facebook charge for running personal fundraisers are simply used to cover the costs they incur when they run them.
Bonus tip: Even though Facebook doesn’t collect any fees from charitable donations, I do recommend that you double-check to make sure your donations are handled in the manner you selected when you made the donation. Read this post to find out why.