Timing of rebates and generosity

David Fielding, Stephen Knowles, Ronald Peeters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Many countries provide rebates through the tax system for donations that individuals make to charity. In most countries, these tax rebates are not claimed until the end of the tax year, although there are some exceptions. In a small number of countries, there are payroll-giving schemes whereby employees can choose to have a charitable donation deducted from their wages and the tax rebate is immediate. To our knowledge, there is no existing research on whether the timing of rebates has any effect on charitable donations. We fill this gap in the literature, using both a laboratory and an online experiment. We find that donations are higher when the rebate is immediate rather than delayed. This implies that payroll giving schemes have the potential to increase charitable donations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102115
JournalJournal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics
Early online date10 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2023


  • Charitable donations
  • Payroll giving
  • Rebate timing


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