As you work on your estate plan, don’t forget to consider charitable giving. Here are some basic questions to ask yourself:
- If I plan to give to charity at death, have I considered just giving during my life instead? Give now, enjoy an income tax deduction and also enjoy seeing the money help others. Plus, you get to see if your chosen organization is wise with the first chunk of funds before you give them more. Of course, you need to consider what assets you will need during your lifetime to care for you and your family.
- Whether I plan to give at death or now, during life, am I giving in the most tax-efficient way? Do it the right way and you basically are using some of Uncle Sam’s money. Do it the wrong way and Uncle Sam keeps his share and you are forced to use only your money (or your family’s inheritance) to make the gift.