When we think about sustainability, the first thing that generally comes to mind is saving our world’s precious resources. Sustainability is in the news daily. Just recently, it was reported that Cape Town, South Africa will run out of water as soon as April 2018! Sustainability is not just about being careful how we use our resources so as not to deplete or damage them. It’s also about “relating to a lifestyle involving the use of sustainable methods,” according to Webster Dictionary. Sustainable methods = Something you can maintain So how do you sustain your planned giving marketing program?
You undoubtedly are aware that among the changes found in the new tax law is a doubling of the lifetime exemption for federal gift, estate, and generation skipping transfer taxes. This doubling is effective January 1, 2018 and is set to expire December 31, 2025.
Clocking in at 503 pages, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act reported out of Conference Committee on December 15 is expected to be voted on by the House and Senate this week and presented to President Trump for his signature by December 22. While it is still possible that changes to the bill could be made at this late date, or that it might be delayed or not pass at all, it appears highly likely that it will pass as is before the end of this week. In the discussion below, we review the particulars of the law that are of most interest to fundraisers, as well as some provisions of interest to fundraisers that did not make it into the Conference version or made it in in altered form.
The National Association of Charitable Gift Planners (CGP) created a task force charged with defining metrics to evaluate the work of gift planning fundraisers and to develop guidelines for criteria to measure the performance of planned giving programs. The task force has not issued its final report, but we have some feedback on their likely recommendations. Best practice performance metrics will provide a basis for evaluating the success of a charity’s planned giving efforts.
Our Client Services staff regularly takes client calls that go something like this: Client: I think your software is giving me the wrong deduction. PG Calc Client Services: Can you please explain what you mean? Client: Sure. My donor is 75 years old, so her life expectancy is 11.1 years using the 2000CM mortality table. I know the deduction calculation uses the 2000CM table but when I compute the deduction for a 5% unitrust with a fixed term of 11.1 years, I get a lower deduction than when I compute the deduction for the same unitrust that lasts for my donor’s lifetime. That doesn’t make sense! It does, actually. Let me explain.