I Don't Want To Break The Law, But I Do Want To Help

Business By DefyGravity Updated 2 Oct 2009 , 8:04pm by Sweet_Treats_1

DefyGravity Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 2:55am
post #1 of 18

My friend is organizing a benefit for a friend of hers who has just been diagnosed with a very aggressive cancer.

For part of the raffle at the benefit, she asked me to donate a certificate for a cake (I would decide the servings and everything). There is absolutely nothing in it for me, except the joy of doing something that would mean a lot to her.

I'm a hobby baker. Would it be legal if I did that?

Thanks icon_smile.gif

17 replies
Price Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 3:06am
post #2 of 18

Just my opinion, but you wouldn't be selling anything. I would do it.

patticakesnc Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 3:14am
post #3 of 18

I think I would call my local heath or agricultural dept to see on that. Each state is different. I know here you aren't suppose to sell unlisc. but people donate for non profit all the time. I personally don't see a problem but I am not the one that would be enforcing any laws on it. Be safe...just call.

DefyGravity Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 3:20am
post #4 of 18

Thanks guys, I'll call in the morning. Since the real prize is going to be a certificate for a cake made later, should I bring a dummy for people to look at, or would pictures be enough? (I just got my first dummies today and I'm a little overly excited to use them, haha)

littlecake Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 3:23am
post #5 of 18

since it's non profit wouldn't it be like the church bake sales?

ccr03 Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 3:52pm
post #6 of 18

HAve you thought of must make a cake and donating the actual cake?

A certificate could open the door to "well, the certificate is for a sheet cake, but I want a wedding cake - I'll pay the difference" type of thing.

Sweet_Treats_1 Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:27pm
post #7 of 18

We have church fundraiser bake sales and school bake sales, so I dont see how this would be any different, since it is being given away. There are no laws against giving a free product if the person is willing to accept I dont think. I do gift certificates for fundraisers and radio shows, and I always make it clear what it is for ie. sheet cake, tier, cookies etc. If the person wants more than they have to pay the difference. Win win situation!! If you are concerned about that since U are a home baker limit the gift certificate to what U decide and dont charge for the difference. When people win a benefit prize they are aware before of what the are bidding on and I dont think if they were bidding on a stuffed cat they would go to the vendor and say I want a stuffed dog, even though that is not what U were offering... Why should your gift certificate be any different. Of course there are always some people who will try...
HTH

DefyGravity Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:30pm
post #8 of 18

I thought about just making the cake just to simplify the whole process, but I really have no idea what's legal here and what's not, and HD Lady isn't answering or returning my calls.

Maybe I can just make a couple small cakes so whoever wins doesn't have to think about what they would do with a 30 serving cake right away, and they could eat the smaller one for dessert after dinner... Hmm... I think I'll do that. It'll be November in Michigan, so hopefully they won't have the heat cranked all the way up.

If that turns out to be illegal, I can just donate a cake to be served at the benefit, since I'm allowed to give away all the cake I want?

Man, my life would be so much easier if our state just passes the bill to sell from our homes! lol

pattycakesnj Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:35pm
post #9 of 18

most states have some kind of Good Samaritan law under which you would be covered. Most of the state laws dealing with home bakers prohibit the selling, you are not selling but donating so you should be fine. Here in NJ the law specifically exempts those who are donating from the prohibition of home baking. Check your state's website for the food laws and it should tell you. Good luck

2SchnauzerLady Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:43pm
post #10 of 18

If there is a tax exempt number, you're OK. I am selling cakes to raise money for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and I am covered under their tax exempt status. The donation of a cake (or a certificate in lieu of) should be OK for you since you won't be receiving the money for it. You are giving the cake away - someone else is raffling it off and receiving the money.

Kay_NL Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:46pm
post #11 of 18

When I've done gift certificates (legally) I put on it "a cake to serve up to 30 people," or similar text! I also put down "does not include wedding cakes and subject to date availability." Since I don't make wedding cakes, it isn't really an issue, but a cake for 30 people greatly limits just how fancy and expensive they can go!! icon_smile.gif

-K8memphis Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:57pm
post #12 of 18

Y'know it's kinda sad how extremely vigilant we have to be nowadays--always looking over our shoulder always double triple checking to see if everything is ok.

Some kid got stopped by a state trooper for riding his bike to school with his Mom. If I understand the story correctly.

Some lady watched three neighbors' kids at her house for an hour before the school bus comes--doesn't take any money for it--the bus stops in front of her house--it's just being neighborly isn't it? The state is telling her to stop running a daycare or get licensed.

Police state much?

Sweet_Treats_1 Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 4:58pm
post #13 of 18

I found to websites that I think can answer your concerns. I think U will be covered since it is a not for profit. So I dont think there would be a differenc If U give a certificate or an actual cake. There is a link on the 1st website, to a bill to allow home baking in Michigan

http://cookingwithdenay.com/michigan/

http://www.mi.gov/documents/mda/MDA_FCQAMay08_276146_7.pdf

Good Luck and HTH

DefyGravity Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 5:59pm
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by K8memphis-

Some lady watched three neighbors' kids at her house for an hour before the school bus comes--doesn't take any money for it--the bus stops in front of her house--it's just being neighborly isn't it? The state is telling her to stop running a daycare or get licensed.

Police state much?




Yep, that was in MI... about 45 minutes from me. That's part of why this makes me nervous. Around here, absolutely no good deed goes unpunished.

I've seen the bill to allow home baking. I wrote to my congresswoman about supporting it, but I never heard back. I'm about to become a pebble in her shoe pretty darn quick icon_wink.gif I think I'm going to write to the guy who wrote the bill and ask what I need to do to help him, even though I'm not his constituent.
[/rant]

Thank you all for your advice. I still haven't heard back from the HD :sigh: I guess I'm just going to go ahead with it since it is 100% a donation.

Thanks again icon_smile.gif

mbelgard Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 6:52pm
post #15 of 18

Do you know if bake sales of goods from home kitchens are legal in your state? If you do that probably answers your question, make sure you know of any restrictions placed on bake sales to be sure.

DefyGravity Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 7:43pm
post #16 of 18

Okay, I *finally* found the right website, and it looks like non-profit bake sales are good to go!

Thanks for the replies everyone!

minicuppie Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 7:58pm
post #17 of 18

I have donated certificates for a few benefits. I never hear from them. So moot point. The already made and yummy looking items brought much more in $ and the buyers had such fun sharing .

Sweet_Treats_1 Posted 2 Oct 2009 , 8:04pm
post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefyGravity

Okay, I *finally* found the right website, and it looks like non-profit bake sales are good to go!

Thanks for the replies everyone!




Yeah icon_smile.gificon_smile.gif Hope everything is a success and U raise a ton of money for this cause!!!

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