Although outright gifts provide vital resources for Lutheran Services Carolinas today, deferred gifts help insure the ministries of the church’s future. Giving through estate plans or life income gifts may be particularly suitable for individuals who would like to provide significant support for LSC but need income from their assets during their lifetimes.
What is planned giving?
Bequests by Will or Revocable “Living” Trust
The most common form of deferred or planned gift to support LSC is a bequest contained in a person's will or revocable ("living") trust. The following language is an example of how a bequest to benefit LSC may be worded:
"I do hereby bequeath ________ ($ amount or percentage of estate) to Lutheran Services Carolinas, 1416 S. Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue, Salisbury, NC 28144, tax i.d. 20-1457236, or its successor organization if any, to be used where needed most to support the mission of Lutheran Services Carolinas. "
Life Income Gifts
Donors may receive numerous tax and financial benefits by creating a "life income gift" such as a charitable gift annuity or charitable remainder trust. The donor makes an irrevocable contribution of assets to fund the trust or annuity, gets an immediate income tax deduction for part of the contribution's value, and receives income for life or a term of between 1-20 years. When the trust or annuity term ends, the remaining assets can be directed to support ministries of LSC. For instructions on how to transfer cash, appreciated securities or other assets to fund a life income gift, you or your broker should contact the Abundant Living Foundation at 704-603-1660.
Gifts of Life Insurance
A donor can name LSC as a primary or contingent beneficiary of a life insurance policy. If the donor retains any control over the policy, no income tax deduction is allowed. However, if LSC is named both the sole owner and the beneficiary of a paid-up policy, the donor may receive an immediate charitable deduction for the lesser of the policy's fair market value or the net premiums paid and additional premiums paid by the donor may also be tax-deductible.
Retained Life Estate
You may generate a current income tax deduction by giving a home or a farm to LSC, while retaining the right to use the property during your lifetime. The property will also be removed from your taxable estate.
Gifts of Retirement Plans
Naming LSC as a primary or contingent (after a spouse) beneficiary of a private pension fund (e.g. IRA, SEP, 401(k), 403(b))can result in a "tax wise" testamentary gift because these assets do not receive favorable tax treatment at their owner's death. In some cases, it is best to divide one retirement account into two separate accounts -- one for your spouse and one for LSC. Your retirement account's "plan administrator" (the company that manages the account) can help you designate LSC as a beneficiary on the plan's "Beneficiary Designation" form.
LSC qualifies as a "public" charitable organization and meets the requirements if IRS Code Section 501(c)(3). Gifts to LSC are deductible at the highest limits allowed for federal income or estate tax purposes.
Income tax deductions: A person may deduct gifts of case (or elect to deduct only the cost basis of an appreciated asset) up to 50 percent of their adjusted gross income (AGI) in a year. Gifts of appreciated real or personal property may be deducted up to 30 percent of a person's AGI. Excess deductions may be carried over for up to five (5) additional years.
Estate tax deductions: Testamentary gifts are deductible at 100 percent of the value of the assets donated to LSC.