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Assets to Give: Securities, Real Estate, and More
Whether you are making an outright gift or a planned gift, Stanford welcomes many types of assets. Options include cash, publicly traded securities, non-publicly traded assets, real estate, retirement plans, life insurance policies, and other possibilities.
- Publicly Traded Securities
- Real Estate
- Retirement Plan Gifts
- Life Insurance
- Personal Property
A gift of cash can be a simple way to provide an outright gift, make a bequest, or establish a life income gift, such as a charitable gift annuity, a charitable remainder annuity trust, or a charitable remainder unitrust. Cash gifts may allow you to use more of the charitable income tax deduction in any given year than gifts made with other types of assets.
Publicly Traded Securities
Publicly traded securities can be used to make an outright charitable gift. If you give appreciated securities that you have held longer than one year, you are entitled to a charitable deduction from your income tax for the full fair market value of the securities. You also may be able to defer or completely avoid capital gains tax on the securities, depending on the type of gift. Publicly traded securities can also be given to Stanford to establish a life income gift or through one's estate.
Publicly traded securities may be transferred electronically from a brokerage account to Stanford. Please consult information on securities transfers here. To ensure that your gift is properly credited, if your gift is to establish or add to a life income gift, please contact us before you make the gift.
Real estate can be given outright, through an estate or to fund some life income gifts such as the charitable remainder unitrust. Another option is to give Stanford a remainder interest in your home while retaining the right to live in it for the rest of your life. You receive a current income tax charitable deduction for a portion of the property’s value.
Retirement Plan Gifts
Giving from your retirement plan as part of your estate plan
A retirement plan can be a tax-efficient and simple way of including the university in your estate plan. The best method is to name Stanford as a primary or secondary beneficiary on your plan's beneficiary designation form. The tax advantage stems from the fact that most retirement plans (other than Roth IRAs) are subject to income taxes—and possibly estate taxes—if left to an individual beneficiary; however, a charity that is named as the beneficiary does not pay income or estate taxes on the distribution. Thus, the full value of what is distributed can be used by Stanford as a gift from your estate, supporting the purpose you designate.
To name Stanford as a beneficiary, you can obtain a beneficiary designation form from your IRA plan administrator. That form usually asks for the name of the beneficiary (Stanford University), its address (326 Galvez Street, Stanford, CA), and a tax identification number (94-1156365). This will provide an unrestricted gift to Stanford. If you would like to direct your future gift to a specific purpose, contact the Office of Planned Giving for appropriate documentation.
Giving from your IRA in 2013
In 2013, you also may make a gift from your Individual Retirement Account (IRA) and take advantage of tax savings. Under current tax law, Americans over the age of 70½ can transfer up to $100,000 from an IRA to Stanford, tax-free. This type of transfer to charity can be a significant benefit for people in that age group because they are required to take minimum distributions from their IRAs annually and such distributions are included in their gross income for income tax purposes. However, if instead they request their plan administrator to make a distribution of an amount, up to $100,000, directly to the university, the distribution is treated as a charitable gift and not included in the individual's gross income. Known as the "IRA charitable rollover," this option is available for transfers made through December 31, 2013 (and could be renewed by Congress). There is no charitable income tax deduction available when this type of gift is made.
Our sample IRA charitable rollover letter can help you arrange this type of gift with your IRA administrator. Please note that there are some restrictions to these transfers (for example, you may not make distributions to private foundations or donor advised funds or to create life income gifts, such charitable remainder trusts or charitable gift annuities). Before proceeding, you should consult with your own tax advisor to discuss your particular situation, including any impact of your state's tax laws. If you have further questions, please contact the Office of Planned Giving.
You can make Stanford the beneficiary of a life insurance policy, and your estate will receive a charitable deduction from estate taxes for that gift. You may also, under certain circumstances during your lifetime, make Stanford University the owner of a life insurance policy on your life, and receive an income tax charitable deduction for a portion of the face value of that policy.
Stanford welcomes gifts of many kinds of personal property that may be used in the mission of the university. The Office of Planned Giving staff will be happy to help determine whether the university can accept a specific gift.
The university also welcomes gifts of many other kinds of investment assets, including closely held stock and partnerships. Planned Giving staff will be happy to help determine whether the university can accept any offered gift.
For more information, please contact us.
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