What Are the Most Common Problems in Gift Planning? Part II

Last time, we looked at some problems related to the donor.

Now we look at problems related to the asset the donor wants to use to make the gift.

The discussion here could fill a two-volume gift planning reference service. The assets range from credit card gifts, to gifts of partnership interests, to gifts of mutual fund shares — and everything in between.

Let’s take just one asset, a credit card gift. Which is common, especially at year’s end.

IRS has said a credit card gift is complete for federal income tax purposes on the date the charge is posted to the donor’s credit card statement.

This means that if the donor in late December calls the development office and supplies her credit card information, intending to make a year-end gift, the gift is likely to wind up being a January gift for federal income tax purposes.

Furthermore, the donee organization may not know for sure how to issue a correct gift receipt until and unless it sees the credit card statement on which the charge for the gift is posted.

What a mess!

This matter is probably something to address on a charity’s website. But care must be taken on the website to avoid the appearance of giving tax (i.e., legal) advice.

We’ll look at some other problem assets next time.

by Jon Tidd, Esq

Posted in blog.

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