Charitable giving in Sonoma County, California is the giving of money or some other asset to a charitable cause.
The vast majority of charitable gifts are made using the most simple method permitted: giving the gift to the intended beneficiary.
Some generous donors will sometimes give practically everything they own to charity. This is a wonderful thing to do, but it's not really practical - after all, just about everybody has bills to pay. One solution to this is to put off such a generous donation until after death. This allows the donor to meet their obligations during life, while having the satisfaction of knowing that a cause they care about will be given a large amount of help after their death.
There are many ways to give a charitable gift that does not take effect until after the donor dies. The simplest and least complex way to do this is a simple testamentary gift in a will - wherein a certain amount of the donor's money is transferred to the charity upon the donor's death.
Charitable Trusts in Sonoma County, California
A charitable trust is an arrangement by which a large amount of money can be directed to a charity after the death of the donor, or during the donor's life.
The money is still technically owned by the donor, but the charity, serving as a trustee, has the permission to use it for charitable purposes, with the exact scope of this right having been laid out in the trust agreement.
The most common kind of charitable trust in Sonoma County, California is a charitable remainder trust. This allows you to give as much money or property as you want to a charity. The money is then invested by the charity. The investments are usually fairly conservative, sacrificing large returns for security. The charity then returns a portion of these returns to the donor, or another person named by the donor, while keeping the rest. This lasts for a set period of time, at the end of which the charity gets complete ownership of the original fund.
Wanting to help a charitable cause is, of course, a good thing. Nonetheless, some people seek to take advantage of our good intentions through fraudulent charities. If you want to help ensure that any money you donate to an organization is actually used for a charitable cause, and that your donation will be tax-deductible, you should check to see that the organization is actually tax-exempt. You can find this information from the IRS and/or the agency accountable for taxation in
Do I Need a Sonoma County, California Attorney?
If you want to set up a charitable trust, you should first speak with a representative of the charity you want to support. You should also talk with an experienced attorney in Sonoma County, California, who will be able to help you navigate the legal details, making it easier to give effect to your intentions.