In Berks County, Pennsylvania, "charitable giving" refers to the act of giving money or property, for selfless motives. It necessarily means that the donor does not plan on receiving any direct compensation for whatever they have given.
In life, charitable giving normally simply involves writing a check or handing cash over to the charitable organization of the donor's choice.
What if, on the other hand, a donor wishes to give everything they own (or a considerable chunk of everything they own) to a charity? This is extremely generous, of course, but it's rarely possible during life, considering the expenses and obligations we all have. On the other hand, most people don't think they'll be needing their money after they die. Knowing this, many arrangements have been created permitting a person to have as much of their money as they want transferred to a charity of their choice after their death.
If you want to make a donation that's effective after your death, there are a few ways to do this. The most frequent method is also the simplest: leaving the charity whatever property you want to give to it in your will - this is known as a "testamentary gift."
Charitable Trusts in Berks County, Pennsylvania
Charitable trusts are arrangements that involve handing possession (but not generally ownership) of money or property over to a charity, either during the donor's life, or after their death.
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.
The most frequent type of charitable trust in Berks County, Pennsylvania is a charitable remainder trust. Under this arrangement, you give a particular amount of money or property to a charity. The charity then invests this money, giving you or a named beneficiary a portion of the income generated from these investments for a set amount of time. Once this expires, the money that was initially invested goes to the charity, free and clear.
Wanting to help a charitable cause is, of course, a good thing. However, 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 really used for a charitable cause, and that your donation will be tax-deductible, you should check to see that the organization is really tax-exempt. You can find this information from the IRS and/or the agency responsible for taxation in
Do I Need a Berks County, Pennsylvania Attorney?
When attempting to establish 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 Berks County, Pennsylvania, who will normally be able to make the process much easier.