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Charitable Planning in Missouri

What is charitable giving?

Charitable gift planning can be a simple process. For example, you can write a check, hand over cash, transfer stock, or sign a deed to real estate directly to the charity of your choosing. On the other hand, there are more involved strategies whereby you can give and receive depending on your unique circumstances.

How do I make a more substantial charitable gift?

If you intend to make a charitable donation of some size before or after you pass away, you should speak with an estate planning attorney, like those at LifeGen Law Group, who is experienced with charitable transfers of investments, real property, personal property, and the tax implications of such charitable transfers. We can ensure your charitable planned gift is set up properly — both from tax and philanthropic perspectives.

Planned gifts can provide significant tax benefits and also even lifetime income for you and your family. Your attorney will explain charitable giving options that allow you to integrate your own values into your giving as well accomplish your financial goals. These options may include charitable trusts and charitable gift annuities.

What are the benefits of charitable giving?

Planned gifts provide opportunities to make charitable gifts that may allow you to: (i) provide inheritances for heirs, while decreasing their tax liability; (ii) l(ii) lower your taxes on your ordinary income through charitable deductions or significantly decrease or eliminate capital gains taxes on the transfer or sale of your appreciated assets; and (iii) create a charitable legacy for future generations. There are many additional benefits to charitable planning beyond this brief overview, so contact your attorney to explore your options.

What are a few ways I can give?

A Life Income Gift. This approach provides a future source of income for the charity while also providing a tax deduction and current income payments to you and your family. This gift can be flexible with fixed, variable, or deferred payments.

Bequests and Retirement Plans. You can name your charity as a beneficiary of your will or revocable living trust — or name the charity as a beneficiary of a retirement plan, such as an IRA, 401(k), 403(b), or other retirement fund. This can be a win-win, especially when it comes to retirement plan assets. There are no income or estate taxes on any retirement plan assets left directly to a charity.

Charitable Lead or Charitable Remainder Trusts. These trusts can reduce tax liabilities surrounding the transfer of appreciating assets in light of current and future estate and gift tax rules. Charitable Lead trusts provide immediate support to your charity for a specified period of time and then revert to your loved ones. Alternatively, a Charitable Remainder trust provides an immediate income stream to a specific person or persons (which can be you) for a specified period of time, and then directs the remainder to a charity of your choosing. The immediate income tax and other tax benefits vary between these two types of charitable trusts, so discussing your objectives and goals with your attorney will help you determine which type of trust will best accomplish those objectives.

Retained Life Estate. You can generate a current income tax deduction by giving real estate (e.g., a home or farm) to your charity, but still retain the right to use the property during your lifetime.

Again, these are just a few (of many available) planned giving strategies you can use to make your gift. Charitable giving is a great way to support your favorite non-profit interests. Even better, planned giving can help you make sizeable gifts that can benefit both charity and your family.

A LifeGen Law Group attorney can explore these and additional strategies with you, depending on your unique circumstances.