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Planned Giving

Planned giving: Benefiting cats for years to come

Leave a legacy that enables you to be a part of the future of feline health care research. Depending on your goals, there are many kinds of estate gifts. You can donate money, property, stocks, mutual fund shares and bonds, even life estates. Download a donor profile form to get started.

Planned Giving Brochure


Estate Planning Tip

"You probably know you can make a gift to Winn Feline Foundation in your Will or Trust. But did you know you may also make Winn primary or secondary beneficiary of other 'due on death' benefits? These may include life insurance, IRA accounts, certain annuities, pensions or 401(k) plans. (Be sure to ask your tax advisor about rights of your surviving spouse if applicable.)"
Tips in 2015

Tip for December, 2015

It’s not too late to make a charitable contribution which can be deducted on your 2015 income taxes.  Charitable contributions made by December 31 may be deducted this year.  You may deduct charitable donations made by credit card before year-end as a 2015 contribution, even if it you don't pay your credit card bill until next year.  Donations made by check may be deducted if mailed by December 31 even though your bank account may not be debited until next year.

Tip for November, 2015

Calendar year taxpayers should be planning and making your final 2015 charitable gift now.  Charitable donations must be made by December 31 to deduct this tax year. Only contributions actually made, not just promised, during this tax year are deductible in this year.  For example, if you make a pledge for a charitable donation during 2015, and paid half this year and half in 2016, the amount actually paid this year would be deductible this year and the other half paid next year would be deductible on your 2016 taxes. 

Tip for October, 2015

Your estate plan (your Will or Trust or both) should mention your pets and how you wish them to be cared for in the event of your death.  Many states now allow “pet trusts” to care for your pets.  However, pet trusts weren’t enforceable under English common law.  So there is no “common law” pet trust; they are state-specific.  Your lawyer can advise of you regarding the technical legal requirements or limits under your state law. 


Tip for September, 2015

Testamentary donations to the Winn Foundation may reduce State and Federal inheritance and estate taxes.  State death taxes may include estate taxes, inheritance taxes, a "pick-up tax" or a combination.  Estate taxes apply to the property in your taxable estate.  Inheritance taxes are focused on the person who inherits the property.  States with no estate or inheritance tax may have a "pick-up tax" that partially offsets what is paid in Federal Estate tax.  Regardless of the form of death tax, the Winn Foundation is a public charity and donations are deductible to the full extent of the law. 

Tip for August, 2015

Don't forget, if you receive anything of value in exchange for your charitable contribution it may reduce the amount you may deduct on your taxes.  If you are given "swag" in exchange for your donation, such as a T-shirt, tote bag or other goods and services, then your deduction is limited to the amount your donation exceeds the value of the merchandise or services you received. Keep track as you go to maximize your deduction later. 

Tip for July, 2015

Being organized may not reduce your taxes but it can help you avoid overpayment.  For example, if you donate your time to a charity you may be able to deduct certain expense (such as mileage) but only if you document and claim them.  One-time charitable donations early in the year may be forgotten by tax time.  Don't wait until the end of the year to document your contributions/donations.  Keep track as you go to maximize your deduction later. 

Tip for June, 2015

Many employers allow you to make charitable contributions by payroll deduction.  This makes donation easy and record-keeping simple.  Just keep a copy of your W-2 or other document furnished by your employer that shows the total withheld for charitable donation.  You should also keep a copy of the pledge card that shows the name of the charity.
For federal workers (civilian, postal and military) you may make donations to the Winn Feline Foundation through the Combined Federal Campaign (#10321). 


Tip for May, 2015

To deduct your charitable donations it is important to keep good records.  Cash donations should be documented with financial records (i.e. a cancelled check, bank or credit card statement, etc.) or a written statement from the charity with its name, the date and amount of your contribution.


Tip for April, 2015

With the stock market at near record highs, now is a great time to donate publicly traded securities like stocks or mutual funds to the Winn Feline Foundation.  If you have held the security for *at least* one year you may deduct the securities' current fair market value without recognizing any gain on the appreciation.  You may avoid not only federal capital gains taxes but state taxes too.


Tip for March, 2015

Thank you to everyone who donated to the Winn Feline Foundation in 2014.  Your contributions are greatly appreciated and help benefit cats everywhere.  As you prepare your 2014 tax returns, don't forget that you may be able to deduct your donation as a charitable contribution.  For most individuals, you should file Form 1040 and itemize deductions on Schedule A.


Tip for February, 2015 

You probably know you can make a gift to the Winn Feline Foundation in your Will or Trust.  But did you know you may also make Winn primary or secondary beneficiary of other 'due on death' benefits?  These may include life insurance, IRA accounts, certain annuities, pensions or 401(k) plans.
(Be sure to ask your tax advisor about rights of your surviving spouse if applicable.)

 

 

 

 

Tips in 2016

Tip for December, 2016

They say the only certainties in life are death and taxes.  But with the recent elections, tax policy changes are on the horizon.  Among the proposals by the Trump administration is that itemized deductions may be capped.  If so, that may mean smaller charitable deductions available in future years.  

However, donations made before the end of 2016 still receive their full value regardless of any tax law changes in the future.  Donations of appreciated securities before the end of this year will still receive double tax benefits; you get your charitable deduction while eliminating any capital gains taxes otherwise due on the sale of the securities.  
 
The future is unknown.  To avoid uncertainty you may accelerate your planned giving into 2016 to take full advantage of current tax benefits.


Tip for November, 2016

Many people today have online assets, accounts, bill payment, auto-deposit, document storage, social media and information which only they can access.  

Until recently most states did NOT have laws to allow your fiduciaries (i.e. Executors, Trustees, Attorneys-In-Fact) to manage your online presence.  The Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (UFADAA) allows fiduciaries access to digital assets.  You may also restrict your fiduciary's access to email, text messages, and social media accounts if you do not consent.  
 
The UFADAA was amended in 2015 and since then it has been adopted by many states.  You should consult with your attorney from time to time to assure your estate plan is up to date under current law and still reflects your wishes.    


Tip for October, 2016

When making charitable donations be on the alert for scams.  If you are unsure, ask to see their IRS tax determination letter or go to IRS.gov and use the "EO Select Check" tool.  Be aware that some scammers use names deliberately similar to known and respected organizations.  If you are unsure to whom you are giving you should follow up to be sure you are donating to the right organization.  
 
When donating online ensure the web address is secure.  It should start with "https" and match the charity to which you are donating.  Never give out your credit card number, bank account number or any personal information over the phone unless you know with whom you are dealing. 


Tip for September, 2016

You may own property or other assets that pass directly to your heirs on your death and bypass your Will or Trust.  For example property held in joint tenancy (sometimes called joint tenancy with right of survivorship) will pass to the surviving tenants upon your death.  
 
Assets that let you name a beneficiary, such as life insurance, annuities, IRAs, pensions, etc., generally will pass to the designated beneficiary directly, regardless of your Will.  
 
Make sure you advise your attorney about all of your assets when preparing your estate plan.   


Tip for August, 2016

Many charitable organizations, such as the Winn Feline Foundation, are happy to accept shares of stock or mutual funds as donations.  
If you donate appreciated stock you've held more than 12 months you may be able to deduct the full current value of the stock with NO capital gains taxes due.  If you sell the stock yourself and donate the proceeds you may have to pay capital gains tax first.
 
So donating appreciated stock may mean less in taxes for you and may leave more for donation to Winn.  It's a Winn-win situation. 


Tip for July, 2016

When organizing your estate plan please be aware there are different kinds of estates.  

Your Probate Estate consists of assets which are distributed under the terms of your Will (or intestacy if you have no Will), usually under court supervision.  

Your gross or taxable estate consists of the total of your Probate Estate plus any non-probate assets plus other interests passing to another on your death.  Non-probate assets may include property held in joint tenancy; assets placed in trust; retirement plans, IRA's, annuities, life insurance, payable-on-death bank accounts, transferable-on-death securities accounts and other assets not distributed by your Will.  Real estate may be part of the Probate Estate if held as tenant in common or may be non-probate if held in trust or owned in joint tenancy with rights of survivorship.  
 
You should keep in mind that changes to your Will do not usually affect non-probate assets.  Care must be taken to assure proper distribution of the non-probate assets in your estate; updating your Will alone may not be enough.

Important Tip for June, 2016

The IRS reports a surge of phone scams in recent years by people claiming to be the IRS.  These scammers often threaten taxpayers with arrest, seizure of assets, deportation, and more.  The IRS states that they will never:
    *Call to demand immediate payment, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill.
    *Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
    *Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
    *Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
    *Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.


Tip for May, 2016

Life insurance (whole life or term) is an often overlooked way to make charitable gifts.  A gift of life insurance can be as simple as designating the charity as beneficiary or contingent beneficiary.  Life insurance proceeds can go to the charity directly without probate, court costs, legal fees or unnecessary delays.  The full benefit will go to the charity even if the donor dies after making only a few premium payments.  A charitable gift can be made using life insurance without affecting assets earmarked for family members, such as a family home or business.  It can also result in a federal estate tax deduction for the full amount paid to the charity.  Current gifts of a life insurance policy itself, or a life insurance trust, may even create current income tax deductions now for the donor.  Consult your tax advisor for more details.


Tip for April, 2016

Will you be changing your name because of a marriage, divorce, adoption or other event this year?  On your tax return the name you use for yourself, your spouse or a dependent must match the name on record with the Social Security Administration (SSA).  If the names on your tax return do not match SSA records it may cause delays when you file your taxes or prevent earnings from being posted to your SSA record.  For information about how to change your name with the SSA and get a corrected Social Security card go to: www.ssa.gov.


Tip for March, 2016 

A charitable life estate is a gift of real property to charity in which the donor reserves the right to live on the property (often a family home) until death.  Since it is a completed charitable gift the donor may receive an immediate tax deduction based on the value of the remainder interest passed to the charity years later.  The property is also removed from the donor’s estate so there is no estate tax and less property to administer.  Since a personal residence may produce no immediate income there may be no reduction in current cash flow.  Like other charitable deductions, any unused amount from a charitable life estate donation may be carried forward five years.


Tip for February, 2016

One often overlooked part of estate planning is making sure your heirs/family know who to contact after your death and where to find your documents, records and assets.  It may be helpful to create a list which can be updated as needed.  This would include the location of your original Will, Trust(s), life insurance policies or other estate planning papers.  You should provide the names and contact information for your attorney, accountant, stockbroker or other financial advisors.  You should list the places you keep important personal records like birth, marriage, death certificates, deeds, financial statements and records.  Of course you should include information about your bank, brokerage or retirements accounts and your other assets or sources of income.  As you gather your financial information and records to prepare your 2015 tax return, now would be a good time to prepare or update your list.


Tip for January, 2016

The holiday season brings many solicitations for charitable contributions from many worthy causes.  But how can you be sure the organization asking for donations has qualified as a public charity?  The IRS has a solution.  Go to their web site at:  https://apps.irs.gov/app/eos/. You can search for the status of charitable organizations by name or EIN (their tax ID number). Winn Feline Foundation (EIN 23-7138699) is a fully qualified public charity.  Your donations to Winn are deductible as charitable contributions to the fullest extent permitted by law. 

Tips in 2017

Tip for March, 2017

You must be able to document any charitable donations you deduct on your tax return.  Cash donations should have a bank record such as a canceled check or credit card receipt (with the name of the charity) or a written record from the organization. The writing must include the date, the amount and the organization that received the donation. 
 
For charitable contributions greater than $250 you must have an acknowledgment from the qualified organization.  For payroll deductions you can keep a copy of your W-2, pay stub, or other employer furnished document.  For federal workers your Combined Federal Campaign pledge card should be retained.  Additional rules apply for donations of property.  You don't submit these records or receipts with your tax return but they should be available in case of an audit.

Tip for February, 2017

One often overlooked source of charitable deductions is giving through an employer's payroll plan.  These plans are easy and convenient, which may also make them easy to forget.  
 
Be sure to include these contributions which may be found on your pay stub, form W-2 or other document furnished by your employer.  These need not be sent in with your tax return but should be retained for your records along with the pledge card that shows the name of the charity.  
 
For federal workers you may make donations to the Winn Feline Foundation through the Combined Federal Campaign (#10321).

Tip for January, 2017

When making donations some taxpayers may transfer funds from their IRA to an eligible charitable organization.  These transferred amounts are counted in determining whether the donor has met the required minimum distribution from their IRA.  
 
To do so the donor must be 70 ½ years of age or older.  Up to $100,000 a year may be transferred tax-free directly to an eligible organization.  More information about qualified charitable distributions may be found in Publication 590 B, Distributions from Individual Retirement Arrangements.


Lifetime Gifts

Gifts made during your lifetime are a great way to contribute to the advancement of feline health. You can honor the special cats in your life, a veterinarian who made a difference or a milestone for your cat. Gifts of any amount are always appreciated, and we put them right to work funding the studies that improve the lives of cats everywhere.

A series gift is a great option if you have an amount in mind, but cannot make it all in one donation. Simply let Winn know the total amount you wish to give and the period of time over which you’d like to give it. We will send you reminders at the designated dates.

Property donations are an excellent way to serve both your tax needs and the advancement of feline health research. If you have investments or real estate interests that are appreciated in value, you can transfer them to Winn. The current value of the property is tax deductible to you, and you may avoid paying income tax or capital gains tax that would otherwise result if you sold the property at a gain.

A life estate is a way to donate your property and keep it, too. Transfer your real property to the foundation and retain the right to use it during your lifetime. The gift is tax deductible when you make it, and you retain the use of the property for as long as you wish. This type of giving works particularly well with real estate. You can even continue to receive income from any investment properties for your lifetime.

Please consult your financial professional for tax advice that is specific to your individual situation.

Bequests: Remember Winn in your will

Add Winn Feline Foundation to your estate plans with a gift of any size. If you choose to name Winn as a beneficiary, please notify us when the will is executed. Winn recommends consulting with your attorney when drafting a will.

A specific bequest is a gift of a specified amount of money or of specific items of property. It could be land, stock, jewelry, a stamp collection, a car or any other personal property.

A percentage bequest is a gift of a certain percentage of your estate or a particular asset. For example, you might specify that your house be sold and that your heirs and Winn each receive half of the proceeds.

A residual bequest is a gift of all or a portion of the residue of your estate — what remains after debts and the expenses of the estate are paid, and all specific bequests to family, friends and other charities are honored. You may name Winn Feline Foundation as beneficiary of the whole residue or a portion of it.

A contingent bequest is a way to remember Winn Feline Foundation even if other needs must take priority. For example, you may wish to leave your estate to your spouse (or another person) if he or she survives you, and name Winn as beneficiary if your primary beneficiary does not survive you. Or, you may make your bequest contingent on the residue of the estate being a certain amount or more.

We will be happy to discuss your estate plans with you, your attorney, estate planner or financial advisor. Please contact Alisa Salvaggio, our Donor Care Specialist, at info@winnfelinefoundation.org.

Winn Feline Foundation is exempt from Federal Income Tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Accordingly, your contributions to Winn may be deductible for federal income, gift and estate tax purposes. Tax ID: 23-7138699.