In Bellingham, Washington, charitable giving is simply the act of donating money or property to a charitable cause, without the expectation of direct compensation. This is typically done for selfless reasons.
In life, charitable giving typically simply involves writing a check or handing cash over to the charitable organization of the donor's choice.
Some generous donors will sometimes give practically everything they own to charity. This is a wonderful thing to do, but it's not really practical - after all, just about everybody has bills to pay. One solution to this is to put off such a generous donation until after death. This allows the donor to meet their obligations during life, while having the satisfaction of knowing that a cause they care about will be given a large amount of help 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 prevalent 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 Bellingham, Washington
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.
The money is still technically owned by the donor, but the charity, serving as a trustee, has the permission to use it for charitable purposes, with the exact scope of this right having been laid out in the trust agreement.
The most customary kind of charitable trust in Bellingham, Washington 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.
Wanting to help a charitable cause is, of course, a good thing. Nonetheless, 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 directly used for a charitable cause, and that your donation will be tax-deductible, you should check to see that the organization is truly tax-exempt. You can find this information from the IRS and/or the agency accountable for taxation in
Do I Need a Bellingham, Washington Attorney?
If you wish to set up a charitable trust, you should consult with the organization directly. They frequently know the simplest way to direct any charitable giving to their organization. You should also speak with a reliable trusts and estates attorney in Bellingham, Washington, who can help ensure that your intentions are carried out.