Are you thinking about making a gift to your favorite charity or organization at the end of this tax year? If you happen to be flush with stock, now is a good time to tap into your generosity and consider donating proceeds from long-term appreciated securities such as stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.
The value of long-term appreciated securities that have realized significant appreciation can be donated directly to support the Campaign for the National Museum of the United States Army.
COL Arthur Goodall, (USA-Ret.), and his wife, Carol, did just that at the end of 2013. The Goodalls donated appreciated stock because they consider their time with the Army as the best years of their lives. “When you think about all the Army has done for our country it becomes obvious that we need a way to preserve this history for future generations to understand and appreciate,” Goodall explained. “So we decided to make a donation of appreciated stock to help the museum get started. It is an easy way to contribute and at the same time avoid the capital gains taxes.”
Securities held for more than one year are eligible for a charitable tax deduction for the market value of the stock, and neither the donor nor the Museum must pay capital gains taxes when the stock is sold. This strategic choice (vs. selling the stock, paying the related taxes, and donating the proceeds) can result in a larger deduction and greater tax savings for the donor and a larger gift to the National Army Museum. Through this option, the more appreciation the securities have earned, the greater the tax savings for the donor.
MG Carl McNair, (USA-Ret.), agrees, “As a board member of The Army Historical Foundation, I feel it is incumbent on us to lead the way in supporting the Campaign for the National Army Museum. For me, donating through appreciated stocks has an advantage by purchasing at a low dollar and giving to the National Army Museum when the shares have greatly appreciated. The donation is more meaningful and otherwise, the taxes would be tremendous.”
This method of giving has become increasingly popular in recent years and is considered one of the most tax-efficient ways to give. In general terms, you may be eligible to take an income tax charitable deduction for the full fair market value of the donated securities–up to a maximum of 30% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) for contributions to charities, including the National Army Museum. (Any amounts in excess of the 30% limit can be carried forward for up to five years).
Retired Army LTG and Mrs. Max Noah decided to support the National Army Museum with a gift of appreciated stock because “it gives the full monetary value of the stock to the Museum, and at the same time, the donor gets credit for the full value and doesn’t pay any capital gains taxes, which we would have had to do if we sold it. It’s a nice way of giving more money to the Museum without the tax burden.”
Ways To Give
There are almost as many variations on the ways to make a donation as there are needs to be met. Explore this list to discover different ways to make a gift that also takes into consideration your personal circumstances and the needs of your family:
Gifts You Can Make Today
- Gifts in Memory of and in Honor of a friend, family member, or loved one
- Charitable Lead Trusts
- Transfer of highly appreciated stocks, bonds, and securities
- Real Estate
- Closely Held Stock
Gifts That Make an Impact after Your Lifetime
- Bequests: Including the Museum in your will
- Naming The Army Historical Foundation as the beneficiary of life insurance policies or 401(k) Plans
- Retained Life Estate: “Give My Home, and Live There for Life”
- Retirement Plan Assets