How to Make Gifts to Charity a Part of Your Estate Plan

For many people, giving to charity is an important aspect of their lives. Therefore, it is only natural that many of them wish to incorporate charitable giving into their estate plan. There are many options for creating an estate plan that involves gifts to charity. Your attorney can help you choose the option that is best for your family.

Five Options to Consider

Are you interested in learning more about the various options for making gifts to charity in your estate plan? Following is an overview:

  1. If you are using a will without a trust, consider naming a charity as the remainder beneficiary. A remainder beneficiary is the party that receives all of your assets after all expenses and debts are paid.
  2. If you are using a living trust, consider including a provision within your trust that directs your trustee to make a distribution of trust assets directly to the charity of your choice.
  3. If you have an asset that allows for a beneficiary designation, such as a life insurance policy, consider naming the charity as the beneficiary.
  4. If you do not want to leave all of your assets to the charity at the outset, consider making the charity your beneficiary in the event that your “first choice” beneficiaries are no longer living at the time that you pass away.
  5. If you are hesitant as to whether you have enough assets to make a charitable gift while still providing for your loved ones, you can include provisions that give the trustee a great deal of flexibility when it comes to the amount of assets that should be given to the charity.

In addition to these options, it is also possible to include charitable giving as part of your estate planning while you are still living. For example, you may opt to make charitable donations in order to reduce the size of your estate for federal estate tax purposes while also accomplishing your charitable goals.

Wondering how you should go about choosing a charity? There are many wonderful organizations throughout Orange County, California, and the rest of the country. To narrow down your options, consider the goals that are important to you and research the organizations that appeal to these priorities.

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