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How You Can Make a Planned Gift

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How You Can Make a Planned Gift

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Throughout the history of the modern Church, members and coworkers have supported the gospel message of Jesus Christ and His Church by giving tax-deductible financial gifts. These gifts help individuals and families by reducing their tax burden while also advancing the Church’s mission. While some people desire their gifts to be realized immediately—usually through cash, stock or property—others seek to extend their generosity into the future through planned gifts. For additional information or assistance with any of the topics that are discussed, please contact our Planned Giving Coordinator at plannedgiving@ucg.org or by phone or text at (513) 570-2343.

Planned giving is the process and preparation of making a gift during your life or after death.

The easiest and quickest way to implement planned giving is by naming or updating a beneficiary to your existing financial accounts. Many financial accounts we already own such as our life insurance, annuities and retirement plans already have beneficiary requirements. This simplifies distributions to your heirs when your life has ended. In most cases these types of financial products have a customer service system in place to assist in providing information and assistance to make any changes.

Many things we own, such as real estate or vehicles, generally do not have a method of nominating a beneficiary. This is where a Will or Trust is needed. In most situations these types of legal documents will require assistance from a lawyer who practices law in your state. One way to find a lawyer in your area is to find your state’s Bar Association online. Most Bar associations have a Lawyer Referral Service and generally offer ways to find legal assistance for those who need it and cannot afford it.

Perhaps you already have done your Will or Trust, have already chosen your heirs, and are not willing or able to add the Church as a beneficiary, yet still want to remember the Church in some way by starting a personal planned giving program. Here are a few ideas.

  • If you are over 70 1⁄2 and have a traditional IRA, you can use a special IRA distribution method called a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) to make a charitable gift to the United Church of God. The gift comes directly from your IRA with no tax liability. Your IRA provider will need to make the Church the recipient to avoid tax liability.

  • When making a gift of publicly traded stock, bonds or mutual fund shares directly from your taxable investment account, a donor is allowed a charitable income tax deduction based the current market value of the security. The donor can avoid the capital gains tax that otherwise would be due by donating the shares directly to the Church.

  • Making systematic gifts by using your bank’s free bill pay service is a simple way to make regular planned gifts.

  • Many people may also want to incorporate charitable giving into their estate plan. For them, a charitable trust may be an effective way to achieve their goals including: to give money to charity, to provide a limited economic benefit to themselves or their heirs, and to potentially receive savings in income, estate and gift taxes. There are two types of charitable trusts that may help: Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) and Charitable Lead Trust (CLT). Both trusts can provide a sizable current tax deduction.

For decades, members and co-workers have considered and designated United Church of God, an International Association, a California Non-Profit Religious Corporation, as a beneficiary in their wills, retirement accounts, trusts, annuities or insurance policies. The United Church of God is thankful to those with willing hearts who have provided resources for our mission.

Our Planned Giving brochure covers many of the commonly used planned giving methods including Last Will and Testament, Will Substitutes, Qualified Charitable Distributions, Life Insurance as a Planned Gift and Trusts. You can see it at ucg.org/planned-giving or we can send you a copy.

If you are considering designating the Church as a beneficiary in your Will, insurance policy or retirement plans, you can contact our Planned Giving Coordinator at plannedgiving@ucg.org or by phone or text at (513) 570-2343.