The House of Representatives today unanimously passed H.R. 4462, legislation that would allow individuals who make charitable contributions to victims of the earthquake in Haiti to claim an itemized charitable deduction on their 2009 tax return instead of having to wait until next year to claim these deductions on their 2010 tax return. The legislation also includes a provision allowing those who text messaged a donation the ability to use a phone bill as proof of donation.
In January of 2005, Congress enacted this type of relief for individuals that made charitable contributions to victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami that occurred in late December of 2004. That bill (H.R. 241 in the 109th Congress) passed the House of Representatives without objection and subsequently passed the Senate by unanimous consent.