FAQ | PAWS Chicago

What is the registration fee for? Does it count towards my minimum fundraising requirement?

Your registration fee covers all TEAM PAWS Chicago costs associated with your membership, such as singlet, fundraising medal, fan club items, etc. Because the registration fee offsets our costs, it does not count towards your minimum fundraising requirement and is not tax-deductible.

If I forfeit my membership perks may I get my registration fee waived?

No. We understand that not everyone will wish or can take advantage of all our perks but the registration fees help us cover our costs so that more funds raised can go towards saving homeless pets.

Why is the minimum fundraising requirement different across events? Can this be lowered?

A few factors determine the amount of the minimum fundraising requirement. The main being most marathons set the fundraising minimums as a condition of charities using their entries – we can go higher but cannot go lower than these levels. The second is that the race entry fees are included in the minimum so races that cost more have higher fundraising minimums. It is for these reasons, that we can never lower the minimum fundraising requirement for any reason (including but not limited to medical, financial, travel, work, etc.).

If I secure my own entry into any of the races, can the minimum fundraising requirement be lowered?

For those who have their own entry into any of our marathons, they may select our “Self-Secured” registration option, of which the fundraising requirement is $650. However, if you need to use one of our charity entries, once you register with TEAM PAWS Chicago we reserve and pay for your race entry immediately and as part of your waiver during registration, you are making the commitment to raise the set minimum fundraising requirement (see question above which explains factors that determine minimum fundraising levels).

What happens if I don't meet the minimum fundraising requirement by the due date?

For those who don't reach their minimum fundraising requirement by the due date, PAWS Chicago staff will charge the credit card on file for the remaining balance.

What if I'm waiting on matching gifts from my company that still haven't arrived before the deadline?

We will be able to honor these as long as you fulfill all of the following:

Email teampaws@pawschicago.org by 5pm (US Central time) NO LATER than the day before your deadline notifying us. In the email, you must include the following documentation from your company:

  • Verification that your company has APPROVED the gift (e.g. receipt, email, etc.). We are unable to accept completed applications.
  • Amount of the gift.
  • That the gift will be sent by December 31 of that year.

Matching gifts must be received by PAWS Chicago by December 31 (gifts not received by then, PAWS Chicago will charge the remaining balance with the credit card on file on January 1).

If we do not receive these items by 5pm (CST Time) the day before the fundraising deadline, we will be unable to honor them.

What if I'm waiting on gifts from my Facebook Fundraiser, Go Fund Me, etc?

All funds raised must be submitted through our fundraising platform, Classy. When you register with TEAM PAWS Chicago, you will receive your own fundraising page to collect donations and will not need third party fundraising platforms. Because we cannot receive guarantees from third party fundraising that the funds will be submitted prior to our deadlines, and often these donations are unverified for us to match to fundraising pages, we are unable to credit any honor these gifts.

What if my card gets charged on the deadline but afterwards, more people donate to me? Will I be refunded?

No we are unable to issue partial or entire refunds. As a member of TEAM PAWS Chicago, you are making the commitment to raise the MINIMUM due BY the deadline listed. For this reason, we encourage you to let your supporters know this deadline to ensure that your obligation is met. Members may continue fundraising until October 31 of that season in order to earn our fundraising prizes.

Who should I make my checks out to? Where should I mail donation checks? Can I mail a cash donation?

Please make all checks payable to: PAWS Chicago and note in the memo line the runner who the funds should credit. All donations should be mailed to our business office address:

PAWS Chicago
Attn: TEAM PAWS Chicago
1933 N. Marcey Street
Chicago, IL 60614

It is not a good idea to send a cash donation in the mail. You may drop off the cash at PAWS Chicago's business office Monday-Friday between the hours of 9-5 along with your information. Alternatively, you can issue a cashiers check and mail that in.

How quickly can I expect a donation to post on my page?

Online donations (credit cards) post immediately. For all other donations (checks, cash, matching gifts, corporate donations, etc.) we post on fundraising pages as they are received by PAWS Chicago.

Why isn’t my matching gift appearing on my page?

We post donations / gifts as we receive them so if you are not seeing a matching gift that you feel should be on your page, that could be due to one of two reasons. First is that we have not received the gift and it’s on its way.

The second is that we received the gift but the donor / company did not include any indication that the funds should be credited to your page. If this happens, please send teampaws@pawschicago.org documentation that will help us find the gift to move it, which includes: date the gift was paid out and tracking details (check number, ACH confirmation number, etc.). Once found we will then be able to move to your page.

Are donations tax-deductible?

All monetary donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

For donations made outside of the U.S. online with a credit card, will the amount entered be in U.S. dollars?

Yes. For overseas donations made online with a credit card, the amount entered in the online donation form will be in U.S. dollars.

When do donors receive a receipt?

Any donor who makes an online donation will receive an automated receipt to the email address provided during the donation. Sometimes these will go to spam/junk folders so be sure to check there! Donors who mailed their donation will receive an acknowledgment letter mailed directly from PAWS Chicago (please allow up to 2 weeks from time of receipt of check before the letter is mailed).

What is PAWS Chicago's Tax ID number?

The PAWS Chicago Tax ID number is EIN 36-4219778.

What happens if I can no longer run the race (injury, conflict of date, etc.). Can I defer to next year / cancel my participation?

Unfortunately, due to the unique nature of our charity guaranteed entries we cannot cancel, withdraw, or transfer any entries for TEAM PAWS Chicago. PAWS Chicago purchases these entries in advance so it is vital that once TEAM PAWS Chicago members make the commitment to joining, that the minimum fundraising level is still reached to ensure that our costs are covered and that we are still able to raise funds to save the lives of homeless pets.

It is for this reason that we outline in the registration waiver that once people register online with TEAM PAWS Chicago, they are still obligated to raising the funds regardless of injury, personal challenges or unforeseen circumstances that do not allow them to participate.

The ONLY exception are in cases of pregnancy or miscarriage for the expectant mother, and each race has their own process for deferrals so please refer to their policies on their websites. However, the fundraising minimum must still be met in the original year of commitment in order to defer.

Can I transfer my race entry to another person?

All our marathons have strict policies that prohibit the transfer of race entries for any reason.

Does the minimum fundraising requirement cover my travel and transportation costs?

No. All TEAM PAWS Chicago members are responsible for their own travel and accommodations to and from their event.

Does TEAM PAWS Chicago help with any travel arrangements?

For the Chicago Marathon weekend, we do have a block of rooms for a discounted rate with the Congress Hotel, which is our official site for our Race Day Party. For other races, we are unable to arrange hotel blocks. Ultimately, it is the individual TEAM PAWS Chicago member’s responsibility to make their own travel arrangements.


If you have additional questions, please email us at TeamPaws@pawschicago.org