Charitable Giving Attorneys in Rhode Island
One of our specific goals for a charitable organization is to ensure the long term financial stability of the organization and one of the ways to accomplish this goal is to enlist the help of the organization’s membership, families, friends and the community at large to donate to help sustain the organization in the future.
Some donation options are: 1) Stocks and Securities, 2) Bequests in your Will, 3) Life Insurance, 4) Retirement Plans, 5) Charitable Remainder Trusts and 6) Charitable Gift Annuities.
(Please note that the following information reflects, in general terms, how a gift might affect specified tax liabilities. We suggest that you consult your lawyer and accountant before deciding what is best for you. We have used the James L. Maher Center in Newport as an example of a charitable organization throughout this article.)
What Are the Benefits of Giving Stocks and Securities?
A gift of stock (or other appreciated property) entitles you to a tax deduction for the market value of the donated stock (not just your original cost). If the stock you wish to donate has been held for more than one (1) year, you can avoid capital gains tax on any appreciation of the stock by donating the stock prior to sale. The charitable organization benefits by selling the stock without paying taxes on the gain, and you benefit from making a contribution that would be larger than what you might have been able to donate in cash.
What Kinds of Bequests Can You Make in Your Will or Trust?
There are three different kinds of bequests, and with each, the entire value of the bequest is eligible for an estate tax charitable deduction.
You designate a specific property (such as shares of stock), a dollar amount, or a percentage of your estate to be transferred to the charitable organization. An example of language you might use would be: “I give to the James L. Maher Center, a charitable organization located in Newport, RI, the sum of $______ (or ____% of my estate; or the property described herein) for its general purposes.” You can also specify a specific purpose for the bequest.
After all other beneficiaries (this includes debts, taxes, and other expenses) have been paid, you can designate that all or a portion of your remaining estate be transferred to the charitable organization. An example of language you might use would be: “All the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate, both real and personal, I give to the James L. Maher Center, a charitable organization located in Newport, RI, to be used for …..”
If a named beneficiary predeceases you, you can stipulate that all or a portion of your estate will be transferred to the Center. An example of language you might use would be: “If any of the foregoing bequests shall lapse, then I give such bequests to the James L. Maher Center, a charitable organization located in Newport, RI.”
As with most charitable donations, you can always specify how your bequest will be used. It could be for a favorite program or it could be an unrestricted bequest.
If you decide to make a bequest, consult with your attorney and financial advisor. They can draft appropriate language for your will, and help structure the gift according to your needs and desires.