In Westfield, Massachusetts, "charitable giving" involves donating money or property to an individual or organization, expecting nothing directly in return.
In general, it's quite easy to make a charitable donation to a cause you want to help. Whether it includes 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 intricate legal arrangements.
Some people want to give a larger percentage of their assets to a charitable organization than would be feasible during life, so they formulate some type of arrangement under which the money will be transferred upon the donor's death.
There are many ways to give a charitable gift that does not take effect until after the donor dies. The simplest and least intricate way to do this is a simple testamentary gift in a will - wherein a specific amount of the donor's money is transferred to the charity upon the donor's death.
Charitable Trusts in Westfield, Massachusetts
Legal arrangements identified as "charitable trusts" are also utilized to give large amounts of money to charity. It can be used to make the gift quickly, or it can be set to take effect after the donor's death.
In a charitable trust, the money that is donated is still legally owned by the donor. But this is largely a formality, as the charity receives possession and control over the money. The charity is then free to use that money, but exclusively for the purposes laid out in the trust instrument.
The most customary kind of charitable trust in Westfield, Massachusetts is a charitable remainder trust. This permits 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 typically 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.
If you wish to set up a charitable trust in you should check with the IRS and equivalent state agencies to confirm that the charity you want to help is registered with them. This will help make sure that your money is utilized for a good cause (and not to line somebody's pockets) and that your contribution will be tax-deductible.
Do I Need a Westfield, Massachusetts Attorney?
If you want to create a charitable trust, you should first talk with someone in charge of the charitable organization you wish to help. They will be able to assist you in setting up the trust, or advise you of their preferred method of donation. This will help you confirm that your donation is as effective in helping the charity as it can possibly be. It is also a good idea to speak with a Westfield, Massachusetts attorney, who can help iron out the more technical details.