"...Giving to the Foundation means that we’re also helping ensure that people who really need help will continue to get it. Whether they lost their homes in Katrina, have trouble getting or maintaining health care or are older and trying to find a new job, the AARP Foundation can help.” -- P.K. Govind, AARP Foundation Donor
The term "charitable bequest" is used to describe anything you give or leave to charity from your estate through a will or a revocable trust. An estate is 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. Even an individual with a small estate can arrange to leave a charitable bequest.
Donors choose a bequest because:
- It is not payable until death, so it does not affect your assets or cash flow during your lifetime.
- It is revocable — you can change the provisions in your will or trust at any time.
- It is private — your will is not filed or made public until your death.
- Your giving options are increased.
A bequest can deliver a specific amount to AARP Foundation ("I bequeath the sum of Ten Thousand [$10,000] Dollars"). Alternately, it can deliver a percentage of the balance remaining in your estate after taxes, expenses and specific bequests have been paid — what's known as the residue ("I bequeath Ten [10%] Percent of the residue of my estate"). Some people use a bequest to give something they own, such as a car, home, art or jewelry. Others leave a paid life insurance policy or other financial investments, such as stocks, bonds or certificates of deposit (CDs). These gifts may provide tax savings.
Designating the AARP Foundation as the beneficiary of your life insurance or retirement assets provides some flexibility in your charitable giving, as well as certain tax advantages. The AARP Foundation will receive the specified assets upon your death, and you have the option of changing the eventual recipient throughout your life.
Charitable Gift Annuities
A charitable gift annuity provides you with lifetime income. To establish a gift annuity, you contribute funds or assets to the AARP Foundation, and the Foundation in turn makes fixed annuity payments to you from its general assets for the rest of your life. You receive an immediate income tax deduction for a portion of the gift, and a portion of each annuity payment is treated as a tax-free return of the investment.
The AARP Foundation has the capacity to offer charitable gift annuities to donors; please contact gift planning officers at 800-775-6776 (please press 2 when prompted), or e-mail Legacy@aarp.org today. You may also visit AARPgift.org to learn more about the charitable gift annuities.
Charitable Remainder Trusts
A charitable remainder trust allows you and/or other designated beneficiaries to receive income from a trust for your lifetime(s) or for a period of years not to exceed 20. At the end of that time, the balance of the trust is transferred to the AARP Foundation or charity or charities of your choice. You can take a charitable deduction for a portion of the gift you make to the trust during the year the trust is formed.
Charitable Lead Trusts
A charitable lead trust allows you to designate the AARP Foundation to receive a regular, fixed amount from a trust for a specified time period or the lifetime of a designated person. At the end of that time period, the remainder of the trust passes to your designated heirs or other noncharitable beneficiaries. Consult a professional adviser for details.
Other Ways to Give
Many businesses have programs to match employee gifts of cash, either in whole or in part. Please contact your human resources department to learn if your company will match your gift to the AARP Foundation. Matching gifts are a great way to often double (or sometimes triple) your generous gift.
Corporate and Foundation Giving
Call the AARP Foundation at 800-775-6776 (please press 2 when prompted) to learn more about corporate and foundation giving opportunities.