Charitable Gifts and Family Foundations
Philanthropy is an important part of many of our clients’ estate plans. There are numerous ways a client can use estate planning to benefit his or her favorite charity. It can be a one-time bequest in a client’s living trust to fulfill a “legacy” pledge made to the charity. Maybe it’s a gift made during the client’s lifetime through a charitable remainder trust, which dedicates certain income-producing assets to go to a specific charity upon death. Some clients involve the whole family by using a family foundation funded with part of their estates to carry on the charitable work they are passionate about.
How should charitable giving be part of your estate plan? The first step is to consult with estate and tax professionals about your options. Below are some examples that our estate-planning attorneys set up.
Charitable Remainder Trusts and Charitable Lead Trusts
Charitable remainder trusts and charitable lead trusts are IRS-approved estate planning tools that allow you to choose the timing and amount of your charitable deductions. We can create these trusts for you with the assistance of your personal accounting and tax professionals.
Charitable Remainder Trusts
The income from property placed in a charitable remainder trust is paid to donors during their lifetime. At the time of death or after a specified period, the property is transferred to the charity. Upon creation of this trust, donors realize an immediate income tax deduction for the remainder value of the property based on their life expectancy. This type of trust can be used with highly appreciated income property to generate substantial estate and income tax savings.
Charitable Lead Trusts
The income from property placed in a charitable lead trust is donated to charity and generates income tax deductions for clients on an annual basis. Upon the donor’s death or after a specified period of time, the trust terminates and the property is transferred to the donor’s intended beneficiaries. This type of trust can be used with high-income property to create large annual deductions while keeping the principal in the donor’s estate for passing to lower generations.
We create nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations for our clients to engage their entire family in giving and charitable endeavors. The foundations make grants on an annual basis to domestic 501(c)(3) organizations, such as charitable, arts, educational, and cultural nonprofit organizations, as well as international organizations engaged in charitable work around the world.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Why is a living trust so important?
- What does an estate plan consist of?
- When should I revisit my estate plan from many years ago?