10 Reasons to Give through Community Foundations
- Local organization with deep roots in the community.
- Professional staff has broad expertise regarding community issues and needs.
- Highly personalized service, tailored to each individual's charitable and financial interests.
- Donor Advised Funds help people invest in the causes they care about most.
- Accept a wide variety of assets, and can facilitate even the most complex forms of giving.
- Partner with professional advisors to create highly effective approaches to charitable giving.
- Maximum tax advantage under state and federal law.
- Multiplying the impact of gift dollars by pooling them with other gifts and grants.
- Building of endowment funds that benefit the community forever and help create personal legacies.
- Community leader, convening agencies and resources to create positive change.
Because the legal apparatus is already in place, community foundations have appropriate forms available so that a fund can be established and the tax advantages obtained quickly and easily.
Tax Benefits of Cash
The federal tax code provides significant incentives for contributions to a community foundation. Gifts during the donor's lifetime are deductible to the maximum extent permissible under current tax law - for gifts of cash, an amount equal to 50 percent of adjusted gross income (and if in any year the donations exceed the percentage limitations, the excess may be carried over for the next five years).
Tax Benefits of Stock and Appreciated Assets
There is also a significant benefit in the deductibility of gifts of certain appreciated assets. The full, fair market value of such gifts (long-term capital gain assets such as stocks and bonds, real estate or personal property) is deductible up to 30 percent of adjusted gross income with some carry over privileges. The donor can deduct the full-appreciated value and avoids capital gains taxes.
The Foundation's professional staff and voluntary community board of directors provide careful administration. Staff is available to answer questions, identify community needs and screen grant requests.
The funds will serve the community now and in the future because only the earnings (of the endowment funds) are spent. Additions can be made to the funds at any time.
The Fond du Lac Area Foundation shares a joint stewardship role with its trustee banks: US Bank and National Exchange Bank and Trust. The Foundation Board of Directors sets investment policy and monitors performance. New gifts and market appreciation are added to the endowment.
If the donor's intended use of a gift should ever become obsolete, the Board of Directors of the Foundation will strive to find a successor purpose or organization which as closely as possible resembles the donor's original intention.
Yearly auditing by Huberty & Associates, publishing of an Annual Report, and careful selection of board members assure continued use of funds to best serve the community.
Ways of Giving
Direct gifts of cash (or checks) are a convenient way to establish a fund.
Stock can be donated to and sold in the Foundation's name. The donor is allowed the full value as a charitable income tax deduction, but pays no capital gains taxes on the sale of the stock.
Personal Property or Real Estate
Personal property or real-estate can be donated in the same manner and tax advantages as securities.
When making a will, and after providing for loved ones, you may also make a gift to the Fond du Lac Area Foundation. Your gift may be a specified amount, a percentage of your estate or specific assets.
You may designate the Fond du Lac Area Foundation as the owner and beneficiary of a new or existing life insurance policy. Insurance premiums paid by the donor are deductible as a charitable contribution.
Charitable Remainder Trusts
You may transfer assets to a Charitable Remainder Trust. This trust provides for payment of a fixed income to you, a spouse, a disabled person or other loved ones. This trust enables the donor to provide a lifetime personal income and income for beneficiaries for a specified period or death of the last heir. The assets are then transferred to your fund in the Fond du Lac Area Foundation.
Charitable Lead Trust
You can name the Foundation as beneficiary of income from a trust for a specific number of years. This trust provides for payment of a fixed income to the Fond du Lac Area Foundation for a specified period or death of the last heir. At that time, the corpus (the remaining money) in the trust goes to the named beneficiaries, such as children or grandchildren.
Private Foundation Transfer
A private foundation can efficiently and cost-effectively transfer all or some assets to the Fond du Lac Area Foundation, yet retain the private foundation's name and purpose. Such transfers offer tax advantages, flexibility, administrative savings, quarterly reports and automatic annual audits.