Tag Archives: IRA

Your Decade Plan For Planned Giving

If you start your Planned Giving fundraising program this year, you won’t believe how much you can achieve by the end of the decade. Here’s your plan for getting there. 

5 Reasons To Promote The IRA Rollover NOW

Image courtesy of 'smil, Creative Commons license
Image courtesy of 'smil, Creative Commons license

The charitable IRA rollover from the Taxpayer Relief Act is one of the rare gifts in Planned Giving that gives your charity immediate cash. For most planned gifts you have to wait until the death of the donor. Not so with the IRA rollover.*

Here’s why I suggest you promote it immediately:
1. Perfect for end-of-year giving. This is an easy way for your donors to make their annual gift and earn considerable tax advantages. More here.

2. Expires on December 31. It might be extended, as it has been twice before, but do you want to roll the dice on any prediction of what Congress will do? Use the 12/31 deadline to create a sense of urgency through your marketing channels.

3. Limited audience. This is only for those age 70 1/2 or over. I blogged more IRA detail back in January.

4. Easy to promote. Share your tax ID number, address and legal name. Have donors contact their IRA administrator for instructions to make a “qualified charitable distribution” to you.

You can do a few sentences on your blog; in an email blast; on Twitter and Facebook (recurring once a week); drop a slip in a mailing you’ve already planned; and drop a mention into meetings and events.

5. Easy for donors to pull the trigger. The companies that hold IRAs have got this down to a simple process. In most cases, donors fill out a short form using the info you’ve provided. The check comes directly to your office (which is one of the requirements; the links above have more detail).

My clients are having great success with IRA gifts this year! You can too if you get the word out.

Do it now because IRA giving may not last much longer.

*It’s actually a distribution (to charity), not a rollover. I’m using what’s popular because that’s how people search.

Charitable IRA Rollover Revived

Happy New Year!

Courtesy of Philanthropy.com
Courtesy of Philanthropy.com
Passed on January 1, 2013, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 renewed charitable giving from individual retirement accounts (IRAs) for those 70-and-a-half or older.

If you were practicing Planned Giving a few years ago, this is deja vu. All the requirements are the same as in 2010, and there are two add-ons.

This is an IRA distribution, not a rollover. A rollover is a transfer from one retirement account to another retirement account.

What we have here is a distribution to charity. I use the vernacular in my title because that’s what people search for.

From here on I’m calling this a qualified charitable distribution, the exact designation in the Act.

Please recognize that my analysis is based on my reading of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, without the benefit of IRS rulings, tax court decisions or other official guidance that has yet to come. I am not providing tax, accounting or legal advice. Donors must consult their own advisors to determine whether, and how, to make a charitable gift.

Here are the requirements for a qualified charitable distribution:

  1. Your donor is at least 70 1/2 years old on the date of gift and yours is a 501(c)(3) charity (supporting organizations are not included; nor are donor advised funds)
  2. The IRA is a traditional or Roth
  3. Maximum $100,000 per donor per year in qualified charitable distributions
  4. The distribution is direct from IRA to charity
  5. The full value of the gift would be eligible for an income tax charitable deduction if it were not a qualified charitable distribution
  6. The amount distributed would be included in gross income if it were not a qualified charitable distribution

Numbers 1-4 are straightforward and what I recommend using in promotional materials. Also drop in these two points if you have space:

First, the amount of the gift counts toward an IRA required minimum distribution, or RMD. Lots of people (though not as many as in 2007 and years before) are required to take more from IRAs than they need. This provision helps them reduce that dilemma.

Second, the amount of the distribution to charity is not included in federal gross income, so it’s exempt from federal income tax.

Important Fine Print
Numbers 5 and 6 have nuances that are more appropriate to an article than a blog. They are the primary reasons your materials include a disclaimer that you’re not providing tax or legal advice and donors must consult their own advisors. The first four are secondary reasons for your disclaimer, because there are ins-and-outs in those, too.

I will make an important point on #5. It precludes using this to buy a ticket to your dinner or an auction item; buy anything from your charity; or fund a charitable gift annuity or charitable trust. None of these are 100% deductible for federal income tax purposes. Raffle tickets are precluded because no part of the amount paid is a charitable contribution for federal income tax purposes. (They may be deductible losses if the person has gambling winnings, but we’re not going there.)

New From 2010
The two additions from the 2010 version are (subject to 1-6 above):
— Your donors can can make qualified charitable distributions before February 1 and count them toward 2012
— If donors took IRA distributions in December, they can count any portion of them as 2012 qualified charitable distributions. Their gifts need to get to you before February 1 to grab this opportunity. (You may disregard #4 for this.)

A Download For You
Here’s an easy one-pager I put together for you to share with your board; use in promo materials; excerpt for an email blast; carve up for a newsletter sidebar; and generally use for your charity as you like.

Getting Donors Started

It’s easy. They tell their IRA custodian they want to make a qualified charitable distribution to your charity. Share your tax ID number. Donors will need it to fill out a form.

Take advantage of this immediate-cash planned gift. It’s a valuable way to start the year and gives you a timely, newsy reason to talk to prospects.

Gift Possibility Remains For 2010 IRA Rollovers

There’s still a chance for your charity to get a 2010 IRA rollover, even though re-contribution is not allowed.

When I posted about the revived IRA charitable rollover, a question arose among the comments. Advisors wondered if those over 70 1/2 who had already met their 2010 minimum required distribution (or MRD, which most taxpayers use as their maximum distribution) could re-contribute to their IRA, then make a charitable gift. The purpose would be to take advantage of a provision in the Tax Relief Act that allows January charitable rollovers to count toward 2010 MRD. The IRS says “no,” because Congress didn’t allow for it. Here’s coverage from The Chronicle of Philanthropy and The Wall Street Journal (if you’re allowed in).

Yet, a gift possibility remains. Your donors who’ve met their 2010 MRD still can do an IRA rollover to your nonprofit (more precisely, it’s a “qualified charitable distribution”) this month, and make the election for it to count in 2010. They would have to distribute more than their 2010 minimum, with the extra going to you. They could do it up to the $100,000 annual limit and it would not be taxable income.

That’s a tough sell, I know, because so many people count the minimum as their maximum–the floor as their ceiling. (They live in a building where I would not want to buy; strictly a rental property). But, it’s a possibility you should consider. Someone who loves your work–a board member, perhaps–might be game. A particularly good prospect for this is someone with a multi-year pledge, looking to accelerate their payments. Or a donor willing to help you overcome a 2010 shortfall.

Another possibility: I have a client with a donor who has pledged his entire IRA to the charity, including distributions, but still owns it. Someone who has made that commitment may also be willing to get cash to you sooner than later. (We’re talking to him.)

Hey, I’m opening up a possibility where you probably thought one did not exist. Exploit as you see fit.