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Glossary


Glossary of Planned Giving Terms

Annuity
A contractual agreement to pay a fixed sum of money to an individual at regular intervals. A charitable gift annuity makes lifetime payments to the benefactor and/or another individual.

Beneficiary
One named in a will, trust or other legal document to receive an interest in as estate.

Bequest
A direction in a will to pay over or distribute person property is a bequest. Also called a legacy.

Basis
See Cost Basis

Capital Gains Tax
A federal tax on the appreciation of an asset between its purchase and sale prices.

Charitable Gift Annuity
An agreement in which you transfer cash of other assets to a charitable organization in exchange for its promise to pay you an annuity for life.

Codicil
A legal instrument made to modify an earlier will.

Cost Basis
The original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation.

Estate Tax
A tax on the net value of property subject to tax (“taxable estate”) plus the sum of the “adjusted taxable gifts” at the time of a person’s death. It is based on the right to transfer or transmit.

Executor
The person named in a will to administer the estate (known is some states as the “personal representative”).

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

Gift Tax
A tax on the donor of inter-vivos gifts (those made during life), based on the right to transfer or transmit, and payable primarily by the donor.

Gross Estate
Total property or assets held by an individual as defined for federal estate tax purposes.

Life Income Gift
A planned gift that makes payments to the benefactor and/or other beneficiaries for the lifetime, then distributes the remainder to charity.

Planned Giving
A way for generous individuals to make larger gifts than they otherwise could make by using planning techniques to provide for both charity and their heirs in ways that maximize the gift and/or minimize its impact on the donor’s estate.

Probate
The process of providing a will’s validity; used loosely to mean the administration of an estate.

Testamentary Trust
A trust established through the will of the grantor.

Trustee
An individual or organization carrying out the wishes of the person who established the trust, paying income to the beneficiaries and preserving the principal for ultimate distribution.

Will
A legal instrument disposing of a person’s property at the time of his or her death.

Insuring the Future


By Shawn C. Mackey CLU


Charitable planned giving vehicles come in many shapes and sizes.  One that is too infrequently considered is life insurance. It can provide a significant gift of endowment for a fraction of the cost and effort.  As an appreciating asset, it has a leveraging effect on a donor’s generosity and the additional possibility of both estate and income tax advantages.  A donor may gift an existing policy or purchase a new policy specifically for Five Acres.  Here are examples of both:

Bob, 37, and his wife Mary have young kids and are not able to make large lump sum donations yet. The ability to make a substantial gift using life insurance appealed to them, and they contribute to it on an “installment” basis of $1,000 annually. The policy insures Bob for an initial face value of $57,807 with Five Acres as both the owner and beneficiary of the policy.  In a new policy such as Bob’s, the income tax deduction is equal to the amount of the premium contribution.*  Over the years, the face value of the policy grows, and a cash value is created which can be accessed by Five Acres along the way.  In 20 years the policy’s face value is expected to be $96,035 and the cash value $36,429. If Bob contributed to the plan until age 65 (installments totaling  $28,000) and then lived to age 75, the policy proceeds of $224,144 would be paid to Five Acres income tax-free.  Of course, there is flexibility should Bob and Mary want to change their plan later on.  

Sam and Allison are in their early 60s and plan to retire soon. After a recent estate planning review they became aware that significant life insurance held in their estate was now creating additional tax liability, so their attorney recommended a gifting strategy. Sam and Allison gifted the majority of their insurance to an irrevocable insurance trust with their children as beneficiaries. They also gave one paid-up policy to Five Acres with a death benefit of nearly $100,000 and a cash value of almost $45,000.  Sam and Alison enjoyed not only great personal satisfaction but a current income tax deduction.*  (Generally, the value of a gift of an existing policy is limited to the lesser of the taxpayer’s basis in  the contract or the policy’s gift tax value, which is roughly its net cash value.)  Five Acres will ultimately receive the policy proceeds income tax-free and can also use the cash nearer term if need be.  

In summary, life insurance is a flexible charitable giving tools.  Donors at all levels can increase their charitable dollars by establishing substantial gifts and contributing on an “installment” basis. The arrangement is private, and no publicity is involved unless the donor desires it. 

*Please check with your tax consultant regarding the tax treatment of any gift.  

Shawn C. Mackey, CLU works for Northwestern Mutual Life and serves on Five Acres’ development committee.

For information about the scholarship fund or ways to remember Five Acres in your estate plan, please contact Cynthia Nickell at (626) 798-6793 Ext. 2250 or email her.