Removed from Charity Mailing Lists

Are you swamped with appeals from various charities?

Are you swamped with appeals from various charities?

How can I be removed from charity mailing lists?

I receive ongoing solicitations from several veterans charities. I am a World War 2 veteran living on a fixed income and cannot afford to give to each of the many requests for donations I receive.

Many come with merchandise that I do not want, do not need and will not use. Others have address labels, so many that I could never use them all.

I receive mailings from the following agencies: Disabled Veterans National Foundation, Paralyzed Veterans Foundation, and several other agencies associated with Veterans.

I fully respect and honor the service that our men and women have done for our country, but am not in a position to give to all these organizations, and I don't want to receive any more charity solicitations.

How can I be removed from charity mailing lists?


First, please accept our gratitude for your service to our country. You and your fellow World War II veterans changed the course of history for Europe and the Pacific region, and we owe you a tremendous debt for protecting Americans and American interests around the world.

As you may know, there are many different mailing lists, or direct mail lists, and it seems that once you donate to one charity, your name seems to show up on many more lists. That's not your imagination.

Many veterans charities and other charitable organizations use mailing list brokers to secure quality lists of those people who may be more likely to donate. Or they may rent or buy mailing lists from other groups.

Charities have found that those who have given in the past, whether to their organization or another, are more likely to give in the future, so once you make a donation, your name is moved to an active "donor list." This is much more valuable than most mailing lists, because it generally yields higher results for the charity.

To make it easier for you to get your name removed from charity mailing lists, we have created a form you (and our other readers) can use.

Just print it, check the boxes that apply (tell them if you want to be taken off their list completely, or if not, how many times per year it is OK to contact you), and put it in the envelope they've included for your donation. You'll probably have to pay for the stamp, but it's a worthwhile investment in stopping their unwanted mail and calls.

Be sure to save the mailing label and the "reply" (invoice or other response mechanism) from their solicitation or follow-up and include them when you mail the form. These things likely have some sort of code that tells them which mailing list your name was on. Since many organizations rent mailing
lists from other groups, they may not have the list themselves and cannot delete your name. But the marketing codes on their labels should tell them which list your name came from.

The form also allows you to ask them (by checking the appropriate line), if you like, to stop wasting donor money on "free gifts" and other gimmicks that cost money and put that fundraising cost towards their charitable purposes.

The form also allows you to request a copy of the organization's most recent tax return, if you want to see where the money is really going.

IRS regulations require charitable organizations to provide you with their tax return upon request, so if you don't receive it after a reasonable time, you can send a second request, or report them to the IRS for refusing to send it when requested.

Here are some other things you might do to be removed from charity mailing lists:

  • Write the Direct Marketing Association, requesting that they remove your name from all their mailing lists, including direct mail marketing companies and nonprofit organizations. The address:

    Mail Preference Service
    Direct Marketing Association
    P.O. Box 643
    Carmel, NY 10512

    Be sure to specify that you want your name removed from both commercial and nonprofit (or charitable) organizations' mailing lists, and that you want all variations of your name included (John Smith, J. Smith, J.T. Smith, John T. Smith, Mr. John Smith, etc.). Remember that it could take up to three months for you to see a reduction in unsolicited mail, and that it may not reduce the amount of unwanted charity solicitations, because many charitable organizations are not members of the Direct Marketing Association.

  • To reduce unwanted telemarketing calls, write to:

    Telephone Preference Service
    Direct Marketing Association
    P.O. Box 1559
    Carmel, NY 10512

    Tell them you do not want to receive any telemarketing calls, provide your name, phone number, address and signature. Unfortunately, this may not help reduce charity solicitations, because many charities do not belong to the Direct Marketing Association. The best way to do that is to mail the form we provided, and ask each telemarketer,when they call you, to add you to the organization's "Do Not Call" list.

  • National "Do Not Call" List: Call 888-382-1222 or log onto to request all your phone numbers be added to the national "Do Not Call" list. Remember that charities are not required to use the list, but it may help reduce calls from for-profit fundraisers hired by the charities.

Remember that even charities with the best intentions may make an honest mistake, and be patient and polite with them if they mistakenly contact you again. Just repeat your request to be taken off their lists.

We hope this helps with your desire to be removed from charity mailing lists.

Also see Stop Unwanted Charity Calls from Telemarketing Services.

Comments for Removed from Charity Mailing Lists

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Nov 22, 2013
Bribe us with 'Gifts"
by: Anonymous

If it's a legit charity, why do they feel compelled to Bribe us with fountain pens, stickers and etc.?

Because guilt over getting them for free makes people donate - they feel like they should "pay" for the "stuff."

All that money spent on those gifts would better served for the charity they claim to help our service men. I am a Korean vet and I know what its like to serve our country and our veterans of all wars should be honored...why are there so many under different titles? Should be just one.

Also the list of various charities and their ratings should be updated...the date on this one is 2007.

These are the most recent ones available. It is impossible to review every charity every year - there are thousands of them.

You can review their tax returns for yourself - if they're posted on the organization's web site. Charities are required by law to provide their most recent 3 tax returns to the public upon request, but in our experience, only one actually provided the Form 990 in response to our request.

If the tax returns are not available, you can go to watchdog sites (listed at the bottom of this page) and look them up there.

Thank you for your service, and your continued support of our vets.

Oct 29, 2013
Charity Shown Twice, Red and Blue
by: Anonymous

It's shown twice, so how am I supposed to know by looking at the mail if it's the one that others complained about or not?

Anonymous, I'm sorry, but I have no idea what you're talking about. Would you give us a few more details?

What's shown twice? Where is it shown twice? If it's the one what that others complained about?

I'm afraid that without more information, I can't help.

Sep 05, 2011
by: Anonymous

I get junk mail from all kind of organized componies and now have 5000 return address labels. Please remove my name from your list and DO NOT SHARE MY NAME WITH OTHER COMPONIES. Any future mail received will be marked RETURN TO SENDER.

Anonymous, I'm afraid posting here won't get your name off anyone's mailing list. You need to follow the instructions above to get your name removed from the charities' mailing lists.

Good luck.

Apr 21, 2011
Removal from charity mailing list
by: JOSY

If a charity is legit, you should be able to go to their web site and request removal. This worked for me (PVA).

Thank God I now have over 10,000 stickers with my name on them.

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