Charitable giving in Westport, Connecticut is the giving of money or some other asset to a charitable cause.
In general, it's very easy to make a charitable donation to a cause you want to help. Whether it involves writing a huge check, or dropping spare change in a donation jar, a huge majority of charitable gifts are made simply by giving money away, with no intermediary or other complex legal arrangements.
What if, however, you want to give all or most of your assets to a charity, to really make a big difference? This is often not practical while the donor is alive, since they presumably have expenses, and want to maintain for themselves the lifestyle to which they're accustomed. Thankfully, there are a few arrangements allowing you to have your assets transferred to a charity after your death.
There are many arrangements allowing you to donate some or all of your assets to a charitable cause after your death, but direct testamentary gifts (simply leaving money in your will to the charity of your choice) are the most common.
Charitable Trusts in Westport, Connecticut
Charitable trusts are usually used for very large donations, and can be made during the donor's life, or after their death.
In a charitable trust, the property is still technically owned by the donor, but the recipient retains possession and control over it. As the trustee, the charity is free to use the money for any purpose laid out in the trust agreement. With a charitable trust, trustees are generally only allowed to use the money to advance their organization's charitable mission.
The most common type of Westport, Connecticut charitable trust is known as a "charitable remainder trust." Under this arrangement, some of your money or property is directed to your charity of choice. The charity then invests the money, while giving a percentage of the income generated by these investments to you or a beneficiary of your choice, for a determinate period of time. Once this time is up, ownership of the original fund transfers to the charity.
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 Westport, Connecticut Attorney?
When attempting to create a charitable trust, or make another charitable donation, the first thing you should do is discuss this with the organization you want to make the donation to. They will probably be able to advise you on how to donate your money in the way that will be most useful to them. And, of course, you should speak with an attorney in Westport, Connecticut, who will usually be able to make the process much easier.