DISCLAIMER: Information appearing here is for information purposes only and should not be construed as legal or tax advice. Consult your lawyer or tax advisor when considering planned giving strategies.
A charitable bequest in your will or trust is one of the easiest ways to leave a lasting impact on the Jewish community. You can specify a dollar value, a percentage of your estate or the residue of your estate. Your bequest can include cash, securities or other property. If you already have a trust or will in place, your attorney can prepare a simple amendment or codicil to provide for your bequest.
Sample Bequest Language
When meeting with your attorney, here are some suggested language choices that you can include in your will, or with certain modifications, your revocable trust:
“I give to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia the sum of $_____ to be added to its Unrestricted Endowment Fund.”
“I give to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia [describe specific property] for its Unrestricted Endowment Fund.”
“I give ____% of my residuary estate to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia to be added to its Unrestricted Endowment Fund.”
Special Purpose Gifts
“I give to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia the sum of $_____ to be added to its (name of fund) to be used for the purposes of the Fund.”
“I give the sum of $_____ or _____% of my residuary estate to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia to establish the [name under which you would like the fund established], distributions from which shall be used for (specific purpose, program, service or field of interest).”
Donors 55 and older who establish a gift annuity may receive a tax deduction, while supplementing their income and supporting the Jewish community. When you establish a Charitable Gift Annuity with Jewish Federation, you will be paid a fixed amount each year for life in exchange for your irrevocable transfer of a minimum $10,000 in cash or appreciated stocks. The return rate is based on your age when you establish the annuity, is typically very competitive, and is only partially taxed. Upon your death, any amount remaining in the gift annuity will be used to support Jewish Federation or another Jewish organization you designate.
You can realize the full value of your IRA or retirement plan by gifting it to Jewish Federation. IRAs and other retirement plans are subject to taxes when left to heirs, making them among the most costly assets to leave your family. When you use your retirement plan assets to fund a permanent endowment fund, philanthropic fund or charitable remainder trust at Jewish Federation, you can use assets that would have been heavily taxed to instead perpetuate your charitable donations.
With a gift of insurance, you can make a major impact at a minimal cost. You can gift an existing policy that you no longer need, or name Jewish Federation the owner and beneficiary of a new policy. When you transfer an existing policy, you can deduct slightly more than the net cash value of the policy for income tax purposes; any gift you then make to Jewish Federation to allow future premium payments, if any, will qualify for a current income tax deduction. If Jewish Federation is the owner and beneficiary of the policy, when you give money to Jewish Federation to make premium payments they are deductible by you for income tax purposes; normally the younger you are, the lower the premium payments.
You can make a contribution during your lifetime that will serve the community for years to come by making an outright gift to Jewish Federation’s unrestricted endowment fund or making a restricted gift to support a program or initiative that’s important to you. You can give almost any kind of asset – including cash, securities and tangible property – to Jewish Federation, and your gift can be made in honor or memory of a loved one. You will be able to deduct the full value of your gift from income taxes, and for certain types of assets, you won’t be subject to capital gains tax. By making your gift outright, you will be able to see the impact during your lifetime.
Giving the Jewish Federation appreciated stocks or bonds that have been held for more than one year can offer you many tax and financial benefits. You can deduct the full fair-market value of the stock on the date of the gift, and you are not taxed on the capital gains that would have been due had you sold the stock yourself. This stock can be used to begin a philanthropic fund at Jewish Federation, which ensures you get a full deduction for the value of your stock while keeping the right to recommend distributions to the charities of your choice. You can also use this stock to increase your income and save on taxes through a charitable life income plan.
A donor advised philanthropic fund can simplify your charitable giving and provide you with significant tax advantages. With a gift of $5,000 or more to Jewish Federation in cash, securities or other property, you can create a donor advised philanthropic fund in a name of your choosing. As a fund holder, you can recommend charitable distributions to the Jewish and secular charities of your choice, whenever you want. Until distributions are made, the assets of the donor advised philanthropic fund grow tax-free, with your choice of investment strategy.
For more information on establishing a donor advised philanthropic fund with Jewish Federation, click here.
Current donor advised philanthropic fund holders can access their account 24/7 online. Log in here.
Real estate may be given to Jewish Federation in a number of ways, each affording you many benefits. You can convey real estate to Jewish Federation during your lifetime – the property is transferred to Jewish Federation by deed and sold; the proceeds are used to establish a permanent endowment fund. You can also gift real estate through a will or revocable trust. You can also transfer the deed to your home or second home to Jewish Federation while living in the home for the rest of your life. The benefits of gifts of real estate can include elimination of capital gains tax, potential annual income and the opportunity to significantly support Jewish Federation’s work.
Through a charitable remainder trust, you can make a substantial gift to Jewish Federation, any of its partner agencies or any synagogue in return for regular payments to you or other beneficiaries you designate. Your trust assets will be professionally managed by your trustee to ensure maximum return and maximum benefit to the community. When you create the trust, you may receive a federal income tax deduction equal to the current value of the portion of the trust that will eventually pass to Jewish Federation. Likewise, if appreciated securities are used to fund the trust, they are not subject to capital gains tax. Your gift is not counted as part of your estate and thus not subject to federal estate tax.
To Find Out More
For more information on any of these planned giving vehicles, please contact Rachel A. Gross, Esq. at 215.832.0572 or firstname.lastname@example.org.