In Pittsburgh, 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.
The simplest way to make a charitable gift is to just give the money or property directly to the organization you want to help.
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. Therefore, people often put off this donation until after their death.
If you decide to make a sizable donation to a charity that will not really occur until after your death, the easiest (and most typically-used) method is to simply leave the desired amount of money or property to the charitable organization in your will.
Charitable Trusts in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
A charitable trust is an arrangement by which a large amount of money can be directed to a charity after the death of the donor, or during the donor's life.
In a charitable trust, the property is still technically owned by the donor, but the recipient retains possession and control over it. As the trustee, the charity is free to use the money for any purpose laid out in the trust agreement. With a charitable trust, trustees are typically only authorized to use the money to advance their organization's charitable mission.
In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a "charitable remainder trust" is the most frequent kind of charitable trust. This authorizes 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 (typically 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 produce, becomes the legal property of the charity, to dispose of as it pleases.
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 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Attorney?
When attempting to create 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 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who will normally be able to make the process much easier.