Planned giving is a vital part of the long-term future of Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass.
By remembering RMHC in your will or estate plans, you help make sure that we can provide a “home away from home” for future generations of guest families. There are many forms of planned gifts. Often a planned gift can help you make a more significant gift than you might have otherwise imagined — without sacrificing income or security for your own family.
Naming the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass as a beneficiary of your will is one of the easiest ways to make a lasting and meaningful gift.
- No financial commitment during lifetime
- Easy to arrange
- Income for the House in perpetuity
- Removal of assets from taxable estate
- Your generosity will help provide either much need current support or will add to the House’s endowment, providing it with income in perpetuity—in essence—endowing your annual gift.
- You can designate a specific cash amount or percentage of your estate or designate a specific asset (stock, or other property).
- Assets left to the House via your will are removed from your taxable estate, reducing the tax bill your estate may have to pay.
- If your will is completed, you can easily add the House via a codicil (amendment).
- To ensure that the full amount of the bequest in your will is received by the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass, please be sure to refer to the House by its full legal name: Ronald McDonald House Charities® of the Bluegrass.
Gifts of life insurance allow you to give a gift larger than you might believe possible.
- Low financial commitment for a large future gift
- Simple, easy, low-cost set-up process
- Potential current income tax deduction
- Additional deductions for premium payments
- Existing Policy—add the House as a beneficiary—for policies you already have and may not need, request a change of beneficiary form, add the House as a full or partial beneficiary, return the form and continue making premium payments (if needed).
- Existing Policy—make the House an owner and beneficiary—for policies that are fully paid, name the House as the policy’s irrevocable owner and beneficiary. You may receive an income tax deduction for the cash value of the policy as well as deductions for any premiums paid in the future.
- Purchase a New Policy—secure a policy in the usual manner and name the House as the irrevocable beneficiary and owner of the policy.
- Your annual premiums, paid to the House, are tax-deductible. You may also receive a deduction for a gift of an existing policy.
Retirement Plan Assets
Retirement plan assets often represent a major portion of the individual’s estate. For many reasons, retirement assets are an excellent source to fund a charitable gift in the form of a bequest.
- Retain control of assets during lifetime
- Preserve most or all of the funds free from taxes
- May qualify for an estate tax charitable deduction
- Can preserve value of the asset by avoiding estate and income taxes
- Under current tax law, retirement plan assets can be subject to both income and estate taxes if left to their heirs.
- Designating other assets for children or family members and using your retirement plan assets for your charitable bequest may help you maximize the value of your legacy, both to your family and to the Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland.
- Consult with your financial advisor to see how using retirement assets for charitable bequests may benefit you—and add the House as a beneficiary of all or part of the retirement plan or IRA.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers about Planned Giving
Do I have to include my wish to leave a gift to a specific organization in my will?
To be certain that the group receives the gift, you should state your intention in your will. Without a will, you lose control over your belongings after your death. Your property and finances are settled according to state laws, whether or not they coincide with family wishes. Make sure when specifying a gift in your will that you use the official name of the organization. For example, though many people know what “Ronald McDonald House” is, the registered name of our charity is the “Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass.”
Must I have an estate in order to leave a gift?
An estate is simply a word used to describe any property, money or personal belongings that you may have at the time of your death. Most people leave an estate when they die, even though they may not have a great deal of wealth. Anyone can arrange to leave a charitable gift from their estate when they pass away.
How do I leave a gift for an organization that I admire?
You can arrange for a gift several ways. The most common way is through a will. Many people set aside a certain dollar amount. Others leave a percentage of their estate, or any assets left over after they have provided for their family. Some people give a charity something they own, such as a car, a piece of property, or valuable artwork. Others leave a paid up life insurance policy or other financial investment.
Who can help me arrange for a gift?
When contemplating a planned gift, working with an experienced professional can ensure that you receive maximum tax benefits while fulfilling your philanthropic wishes. If you are already working with a professional financial planner, lawyer, accountant or insurance agent, discuss with them your intentions to leave a charitable gift. Most can either help you directly or refer you to someone with experience in estate planning and/or charitable giving. If you do not have a relationship with a professional, please contact our office and we can provide some organizations for you to contact.
How do I leave a gift in memory or in honor of a person or for a specific purpose?
A gift is a wonderful way to recognize someone who has made a difference in your life or to thank an organization or person that helped you or your family. You may also want to give to a specific cause such as research or to a new building or program. This kind of memorial/honorarium gift can be arranged in your will, the same way that you would leave a personal gift from your estate. Just make sure that the language clearly states that the gift is given in memory or in honor of a particular person or for a specific use.
Do I tell the charity I’ve arranged for the gift?
This is up to you. Nonprofit organizations often like to know in advance so they can recognize your generosity. They also can help you direct your gift to a specific program that fits your intentions. Ultimately, it is entirely up to you as to whether or not you let the charity know of your decision to leave a gift.
What are my options if I want to leave a gift to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass?
Philanthropic gifts can and do come in many forms. Of course, at any time you may make an outright gift of cash, appreciated securities or mutual fund shares, artwork, equipment or even real estate. If you are interested in additional flexibility in planning a gift to the House, you may also pledge a specific money amount that is payable over a mutually agreed upon period of time.
The Ronald House can also receive life income gifts either through charitable remainder trusts or the pooled income fund. Life income gifts allow the donor to receive income while making a gift to the House. Additionally, life income plans can offer an immediate income tax deduction. The charitable remainder unitrust and the charitable remainder annuity trust can be funded with cash or appreciated securities and structured to provide life income for the donor, with the Ronald House as the ultimate beneficiary. Charitable remainder trusts are individually managed by an external trustee designated by the donor.
Another option is the charitable lead trust. Through a charitable lead trust the House can receive the income stream from an asset held in trust for a specific term of years. At the end of the term of the trust, the assets revert to the donor or his or her family. Charitable lead trusts can offer prospective donors a vehicle for accomplishing philanthropic and estate planning objectives.
Another way of supporting the Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland is through a bequest in a will, or through the designation of the Ronald House as a beneficiary of all or a portion of a life insurance policy, an IRA, 401(k), 403(b), or other qualified pension plan. The full amount of a bequest or testamentary gift is deductible from a taxable estate.
All gifts to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass are used efficiently and effectively to continue the House’s important mission. Furthermore, the House will continue as long as there are sick children who need their families near them while they receive serious medical attention. Whatever you decide, please know that your planned gift is a lasting tribute and testament to your commitment to philanthropy. Today, begin thinking about how you’d like to leave your legacy, and make a lasting and important difference in your community for many tomorrows.
For more information or to get started please contact Chelsi McDonald.