Charitable giving in St. Augustine, Florida 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 large majority of charitable gifts are made simply by giving money away, with no intermediary or other complex legal arrangements.
Some people, however, may be particularly dedicated to a certain cause, giving rise to a desire to donate a very large percentage of their assets to it. However, during life, this is often infeasible, since people have their own expenses that they have to cover. So, people often put off this donation until after their death.
There are many ways to give a charitable gift that does not take effect until after the donor dies. The easiest 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 St. Augustine, Florida
A charitable trust is an arrangement by which a large amount of money can be given 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 right to use it for charitable purposes, with the exact scope of this right having been laid out in the trust agreement.
If a person decides to set up a charitable trust in St. Augustine, Florida, they usually set up a "charitable remainder trust," since this is usually beneficial to both the donor (or their estate) as well as the charity. The operation of this type of trust is fairly simple: at a set time (usually the donor's death) the property that the donor wants to give to the charity is handed over, and the charity invests it. The charity benefits by getting to keep most of the money that these investments generate. The donor benefits because they also get a percentage of this income, for a period of time laid out in the trust agreement. Afterwards, the recipient of the donation gets it free and clear.
Obviously, if you want to help a good cause, you want to make sure that any charity you donate to is legitimate. Sadly, there are quite a few fraudulent charities out there. The best way to do this is to check and make sure that the charity is registered as a tax-exempt organization with the IRS, and the tax authorities in
Do I Need a St. Augustine, Florida Attorney?
Making a substantial charitable donation is a generous and admirable act. However, good intentions don't always lead to good results. To ensure that your donation has the most positive impact possible, you should discuss the matter in detail with representatives of the organization(s) you want to donate to. It might be helpful to have a St. Augustine, Florida lawyer handle these negotiations on your behalf, since they will likely understand the legal and financial complexities involved.