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Ask Gordon

Gordon L. Nelson, CPA, CFP® is a planned giving specialist. Want to get your questions answered? Write him or call him at 435.213.9986.

February 2024

Dear Gordon,
I have a life insurance policy that I no longer need (long story better suited for another type of advice column). Recently, a friend mentioned that it could be used to support a charity of my choice, like the Foundation. Is this true? If so, how?
Exploring Options
Sarasota, FL
Dear Exploring,

Yes, a gift of life insurance is a wonderful way to support a charity of your choice at a fraction of the cost.  Here’s how you can make the most of your options:

  1. Gift of Your Policy: If you possess a life insurance policy that’s outlived its original purpose, donating it can provide immediate advantages. By gifting your policy today, you’re entitled to an income tax deduction, offering a significant financial benefit.
  2. Naming the Foundation as a Beneficiary: Perhaps you’re uncertain if your policy will be needed in the future but wish to keep your options open. A viable alternative is to continue holding the policy while designating the Foundation as a beneficiary. This can be done either as the sole beneficiary or for a portion of the policy proceeds. Your insurance company can assist with a change of beneficiary form to facilitate this.
  3. Annual Gifts for Premium Payments: Another strategy involves making annual donations to the Foundation, which can be allocated towards the premiums of the gifted policy. For each year that you contribute in this manner, you could be eligible for an income tax deduction, further enhancing the appeal of this giving method.

For more detailed information, click here or get in touch!

Warm regards,

*The Foundation uses a capable third-party administrator for their gift annuity program in which the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida is listed as the beneficiary of the contract.

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