Planned Giving Glossary

Appreciated Property: Securities, real estate or other property that have risen in value since the individual acquired it. Generally, appreciated property that has been held by a donor for a year or more may be donated at full fair market value with no capital gains cost.

Beneficiary: The recipient of a bequest from a will or a distribution from a trust, insurance policy or retirement plan

Bequest: A gift of property or cash to an individual or organization under a will

Codicil: An addition to a will that either modifies or revokes part of it

Executor: The person named in a will to administer the estate

Fair Market Value: The price that an asset would bring on the open market

Intestacy: When a person dies without a valid will, state laws will determine how the individual’s estate will be divided by any heirs. If there are no heirs, the state absorbs any remaining probate assets.

Irrevocable Gift: A gift that cannot be annulled, undone or changed

Life Income Gift: A planned gift that makes payments to the benefactor and/or other beneficiaries for life or a term of years, then distributes the remainder to charity

Planned Giving: Structuring a charitable gift to maximize personal, financial and tax benefits for the donor — as well as a gift to charity — at the same time

Power of Attorney: Legally appointing an individual as your “Attorney-in-Fact,” allowing that person to take charge of your financial affairs in the event of incompetency or disability

Present Value: The value, in today’s dollars, of assets to be received at some future time

Qualified Appraisal: A written appraisal conducted by a knowledgeable professional to determine the fair market value of property (real or tangible) donated to a charity. If the donor wishes to use the value of the donated property for a charitable income tax deduction, the appraisal must be obtained by the donor and attached to his or her tax return.

Real Property: Immovable property; land, together with all the property on it that cannot be moved, together with any attached rights; also referred to as “real estate”

Remainder Interest: In a trust, the portion of the principal left after the income interest has been paid to the beneficiary. A charitable remainder trust makes payments to the benefactor or other individuals and then passes its remainder to charity.

Retained Life Estate: The right to use property for life (usually a residence or a farm) after contributing the remainder interest to a charitable institution

Retirement Accounts: Qualified plans like IRAs and 401(k) accounts that permit individuals to accumulate savings tax-free for retirement

Tangible Personal Property: Includes movable objects (e.g. china, jewelry, books, art, etc.) but does not include land, buildings, or other forms of real estate (real property—see above), or stocks, bonds, copyrights, cash or other "intangible" personal property

Trust: A transfer of property or assets by the grantor to the care of an individual or organization, for the benefit of the grantor or others

Trust Term: The length of time during which a trust is in existence. It may be for a specified number of years or for the lifetime of one or more individuals.

Trustee: An individual or organization carrying out the wishes of the person who established the trust, making payments to the beneficiaries and preserving the principal for ultimate distribution

Will: A document by which a donor regulates the rights of others over his or her property or family after death

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