In Portage, Michigan, "charitable giving" involves transferring money or property to an individual or organization, expecting nothing directly in return.
Most charitable donors, while they're alive, give their gifts in the simplest way allowed: handing the money or property they wish to donate over to the individual or group they want to help.
Some people want to give a larger percentage of their assets to a charitable organization than would be feasible during life, so they establish some type of arrangement under which the money will be transferred upon the donor's death.
If you decide to make a sizable donation to a charity that will not actually occur until after your death, the easiest (and most normally-used) method is to simply leave the desired amount of money or property to the charitable organization in your will.
Charitable Trusts in Portage, Michigan
A charitable trust is an arrangement through which some amount of money or property is given to a charity after the donor's death, or during their life.
Under a charitable trust, the money going to the charity technically still belongs to the donor. However, the charity, acting as a trustee, has authority to use it for charitable purposes (what the money can and can't be used for should be clearly laid out in the trust).
In Portage, Michigan, a "charitable remainder trust" is the most recognized kind of charitable trust. This allows the money or property to immediately pass to the charity of the donor's choice, so they can benefit from it as soon as possible. The charity takes the money, and invests it (generally in reliable, but not necessarily high-yield, investments). They keep most of the income that this generates, but return a portion of it to the donor on a regular basis, for a set period of time. When this time runs out, the original donation, along with all the income it will generate, becomes the legal property of the charity, to dispose of as it pleases.
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 Portage, Michigan 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 Portage, Michigan lawyer handle these negotiations on your behalf, since they will likely understand the legal and financial complexities involved.