Planned Giving: What to Give

Gifts of Cash

The simplest way to make a gift is to write out a check. By doing this you may be entitled to an income tax deduction—and the Center for the Arts will be immediately able to use your generous gift to further our mission.

If you itemize, your outright gifts of cash are fully deductible for federal income tax purposes up to 50% of your adjusted gross income. If your total gifts should exceed this limitation, the excess may be carried forward for tax purposes for up to five additional years.

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Gifts of Real Estate

If you have owned your home, a vacation home, acreage, or a farm for many years, a charitable gift of that real estate can be especially tax-advantageous.

The property may have so appreciated in value over the years that its sale would result in a sizeable capital gains tax. If given to us instead, you avoid the tax and, at the same time, realize a charitable deduction for the full fair market value of the real estate.

Gifts of Stock

Giving long-term appreciated stock offers you a two-fold tax saving. First, you avoid paying any capital gains tax on the increase in value of your stock. In addition, you receive a tax deduction for the full fair market value of the stock on the date of the gift.

For income tax purposes the value of such gifts may be deducted up to 30% of adjusted gross income, with an additional five-year carry forward.

Gifts of Life Insurance

If you own a life insurance policy that is no longer needed, consider it as the perfect vehicle for a charitable gift.

To receive a charitable deduction, name us as both the owner and beneficiary of the policy. If the policy has cash value, you can take a charitable deduction approximately equal to the cash value at the time of the gift. In addition, if annual premiums are still to be made and you continue to pay them, those premiums will become tax deductible each year. It’s easy to contribute a life insurance policy to us. Just check with your life insurance agent for details on which forms to complete.

Gifts of Retirement Plan Assets

Many people have retirement plans that have been growing, tax-deferred, over the years. If you are now required to withdraw from your retirement plan, and you do not need the withdrawn amount in any year for personal use, you may consider giving all or part of that withdrawal to the Centers for the Arts. Even though the withdrawals are subject to income tax, such gifts are tax deductible if you itemize. In addition, since retirement plan assets are also taxed heavily by the IRS after your lifetime, you may want to consider designating the Centers for the Arts as the beneficiary of your retirement plan after your lifetime and giving other non-income taxable assets (such as cash, stock, real estate, etc.) to your heirs. Such an arrangement could provide that more assets go to your family after your lifetime.

NOTE: Because the tax rules regarding retirement plans are technical and complex, please discuss your situation with your own advisors before making any gift.