Gifts Made During Your Lifetime If your financial position is sufficiently strong, you may want to consider giving a gift outright during your lifetime. If you are like most, you will enjoy seeing firsthand the direct results of your gift in addition to benefiting from certain tax advents that may accompany your gift. In addition, because not-for profit organizations are not required to pay tax on capital gain the charity you select benefits from the full value of your gift.

You may choose to give a gift of cash or marketable securities. Or, you may give a gift such as real estate, a car or even a special collection that the charity may keep or sell. Within limits, you may deduct the full market value of the items you donate on your federal income tax return.

   Gifts Under Will another way of giving involves remembering a charity in your will or trust to take effect at your death. You note in your will or trust which assets stay in your name and under your control and you can amend or revoke your decision whenever you like simply by modifying your will or trust.

If a federal income tax deduction during your lifetime is not an important part of your decision to make a significant bequest, a gift under a will may be an appropriate approach. In addition the value of a gift under a will reduces your taxable estate a corresponding amount—which may be beneficial to your heirs.

   The Charitable Remainder Trust If your situation warrants, incorporating a charitable remainder trust into your estate plan can yield significant immediate and long-term benefits for you, your beneficiaries, and the charity you select. Your estate planning attorney develops a trust document that provides for an income payout to go to you and/or your beneficiaries while living, with the “Remainder” eventually going to the not for profit organization you designate. A charitable remainder trust can be funded with cash, securities, or non-financial assets.


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