With Chanukah here and candles lighting the night, many individuals and families not only give gifts to one another, but also give gifts to charity.
Below are 8 Tips for Your Year End Philanthropy to help you get the most out of your giving during the Festival of Lights, and beyond (but hurry... if you intend to secure tax benefits for 2021, charitable contributions must be completed by 12/31):
1. Donate Appreciated Assets (in lieu of cash):
You'll gain important tax benefits by gifting stocks, bonds, etc. that have grown in value and that you've owned for over a year.
Secure immediate tax benefits with gifts to your DAF (akin to your own online charitable giving account), and provide charitable support to your favorite causes at any future time.
3. Update Your Beneficiary Designations: Create your Jewish legacy easily and with minimal or no cost during your lifetime by leaving a percentage of your retirement account [e.g. 401(k), IRA, etc.] or life insurance policy to the JCF to endow your giving to benefit future generations.
4. Bunch Your Gifts:
By frontloading your multi-year giving into a DAF, you may earn important itemized tax deduction benefits, and then you may spread out distributions from the DAF in the future. (Note: Link goes to an outside source for informational purposes only; JCF has no affiliation with the website.)
If you are age 70 1/2 or older, consider giving from your assets, not your income, and avoiding a tax hit when you donate directly from your IRA to your fund at the JCF.
Donate up to $300 (or $600 per married couple filing jointly), and earn a special tax deduction thanks to the CARES Act.
For 2021, your charitable giving of up to 100% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) is deductible, up from the normal 60%.
Help your child(ren) or grandchild(ren) start a lifelong practice of tikkun olam by opening a "starter donor advised fund" and earn matching gifts into the fund.
Questions? We welcome any questions you may have, and please be sure to contact your trusted advisor as needed, as the JCF does not provide financial, legal, or tax advice. We are happy to work with you and your advisor to ensure you get the most out of your charitable giving.
Happy Chanukah, happy giving, and all the best from the entire JCF Board and staff!