In Zeeland, Michigan, "charitable giving" involves donating 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 permitted: handing the money or property they wish to donate over to the person or group they want to assist.
Some people, however, may be especially 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 usually infeasible, since people have their own expenses that they have to cover. Thus, people often put off this donation until after their death.
There are many arrangements authorizing 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 prevalent.
Charitable Trusts in Zeeland, Michigan
A charitable trust is an arrangement through which some amount of money or property is directed to a charity after the donor's death, or throughout their life.
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 typical type of Zeeland, Michigan charitable trust is identified 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.
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 Zeeland, Michigan 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 Zeeland, Michigan attorney, who can help iron out the more technical details.