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Impact of tax reform on charitable giving and how to maximize your deduction

Published December 2017

Proposed tax reform would reduce the full scope and value of the charitable giving deduction in future years for many taxpayers.  Through a charitable fund at LVCF, you can meet your charitable giving goals while maximizing the benefits of the charitable giving deduction in 2017.

As the year-end approaches, many individuals are meeting with their professional advisors to discuss tax reduction planning, wealth management goals, and estate plans.  We know that charitable giving is often an important element of these conversations, especially in this season of giving.

The current tax reform bill under debate by Congress, along with a stock market at its peak, add additional considerations to year-end planning.  Both the House and Senate bills as passed would double the standard deduction and reduce marginal tax rates, thereby reducing the full scope and value of the charitable giving deduction in future years. 

How does this impact you as a donor?  There’s no doubt that philanthropists have an innate desire to give to the causes that matter to them.  A reduced tax obligation is not always the driver of this giving, but it is certainly an added benefit.  Donors can take advantage of this added benefit while it’s still available in its full scope and value by contributing to a charitable fund in 2017. 

One option is a donor-advised fund.  A donor-advised fund is such a powerful giving tool because it separates the tax decision from the giving decision.  You can take a charitable tax deduction today, in the year of the gift to the fund (subject to certain limitations), even if you choose not to distribute or grant the fund’s balance to other nonprofits until tomorrow, in a later tax year.  You retain the privilege to determine which charities receive these future distributions.

The Lehigh Valley Community Foundation can help establish a donor-advised fund, or several other charitable giving vehicles, right here in your backyard, serving the community in which we live, work, and play.  We work with many individuals and their professional advisors across the Valley to help philanthropists achieve their charitable giving goals.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you maximize the full scope and value of the charitable giving deduction in 2017.  You may be able to do more for yourself and for the causes that matter to you.

ASK ERIKA | Ask me how the Community Foundation can benefit you—and make a difference in the community....

Erika Riddle-PetrozelliErika Riddle Petrozelli, CPA
Director of Donor Services
840 West Hamilton Street, Suite 310
Allentown, PA 18101
Phone: (610) 351-5353   Ext. 13