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Planned Giving

Planned Giving 

Consider leaving a legacy at the AAVSO to support variable star research and education for generations to come. A well-planned gift can support the AAVSO’s future, while helping you and your family achieve your financial goals, such as lowering your tax liability or providing an income source for life. With many giving options to choose from, you can select the type of planned gift that best suits your needs. 

A Bequest Through Your Will

Remembering the AAVSO in your will is the most common way to plan a future gift. You may arrange for the AAVSO to receive a specific dollar amount, specific property, a percentage of your estate, or the remainder (what's left). Such a designation can reduce your estate taxes. In many cases, a simple change to your will can add this bequest and does not require rewriting your most recent will.

Create a Charitable Remainder Trust or a Charitable Lead Trust 

Individually managed charitable trusts of donated assets (typically cash, securities, and/or property) can be tailored by your advisor to meet your specific financial planning needs.  

Charitable remainder trusts can provide a fixed or variable income for a set number of years, or for your life or the life of the beneficiaries you designate. Because the remaining assets will pass to the AAVSO to support its non-profit mission, a tax deduction is often available to the donor at the time the trust is established

In a charitable lead trust, assets (generally cash or securities) are transferred to a trust that pays income from the fund to the AAVSO for a period of years, after which time, the trust terminates and the assets can pass to the beneficiaries you designate. This trust helps to lower estate and gift taxes that would otherwise be due on the assets. This option is especially attractive if you want to leave your children or grandchildren assets in the future, but not immediately.

Design a Gift Annuity

In exchange for a gift of cash, stock, or securities, the AAVSO will pay you, you and your survivor, or another person named by you, a guaranteed income for life. In addition, you receive a substantial income tax deduction the year of the gift, and part of the annual payment is non-taxable. Your annuity payment and tax deduction are based on the age and income of the recipient.

Consider a Deferred Gift Annuity

A deferred gift annuity is similar to a gift annuity except that payments begin for you at a future date of your choice, such as your retirement. Your tax deduction and the annual rate of return on your annuity increase the longer you wait to start payments. This is an excellent retirement planning method to implement during prime income producing years that will benefit you later.

Use Your Life Insurance

Insurance is another simple way to make a substantial future gift at a level that would not be possible at the same level in cash. Name the AAVSO the owner and beneficiary to receive the proceeds of an existing life insurance policy. You will receive a tax deduction for approximately the cash surrender value, thereby reducing your tax liability in the year of the gift.

An alternative is to purchase a new life insurance policy naming this organization as owner and beneficiary. With this option, you receive an income tax deduction for each premium made and make possible a major gift to your favorite charity with a modest annual payment (or one-time premium payment).

Look to Retirement Accounts for Gift Opportunities

Account funds (IRAs or company plans) beyond the comfortable support of yourself or loved one may be given (like life insurance proceeds) to the AAVSO by proper beneficiary designation. Large pension plan assets can be subject to double or triple taxation (federal estate, federal income, and state death and state income tax) that virtually eliminates the benefits to heirs if tax-wise alternative planning is not arranged.

Plan a Gift of Real Estate

For some people, a gift of land, primary residence, or vacation home is a preferred way to make a gift. You will receive a tax deduction for the full fair market value, avoid all capital gains tax, and remove this asset from future estate taxes. One option is to give real estate while you retain a life tenancy. This provides a substantial income tax deduction by giving (deeding) your home or farm to your favorite charity now. You continue to live there, maintain the property as usual, and even receive any income it generates. At your death the property will be sold and the proceeds will support the mission of the AAVSO.

For most planned giving you will need the AAVSO federal identification number: 042 164 402

AAVSO Charitable Giving Strategies Presentation given by Tom Alessi and Craig Richardson from The Moody Street Group 

For more information on the Charitable Giving Strategies talked about in the presentation please contact

Tom Alessi, talessi@moodystreet.com, (617) 682-7374 or
Craig Richardson, crichardson@moodystreet.com, (617) 916-5155

AAVSO 49 Bay State Rd. Cambridge, MA 02138 aavso@aavso.org 617-354-0484