How to Give
Outright Gifts / Cash
Restricted and unrestricted gifts made by cash, check, or credit card are the most common forms of donation. Generally tax-deductible in the year in which it is made, your cash gift can be put to work immediately.
Charitable contributions of stocks, bonds, and other appreciated securities may provide you a maximum tax benefit. Typically deductible at the market value on the date gifted, your contribution of securities allows you to avoid capital gains tax on any appreciation.
Gifts from Donor-Advised Funds and Family Foundations
Increasing numbers of donors are finding that donor-advised funds and foundations provide flexibility for their overall philanthropic activities.
Real Estate or Tangible Personal Property
Gifts of property made without restriction as to resale are generally accepted by Westfield State. Under tax laws, gifts of real and tangible property (including jewelry, art, antiques, gold, historical documents and equipment) deemed acceptable by the University and the Foundation receive fair market value. The donor is responsible for securing a qualified appraisal for all gifts of real estate and tangible personal property. State, federal, and IRS regulations apply.
Many public and private companies match their employees’ contributions to higher education. You might double or even triple the value of your gift to Westfield State University. To release these funds, you must initiate a process with your or your spouse’s employer.
Planned, Deferred, and Combination Gifts
Planned, deferred, and combination gifts offer donors an excellent opportunity to make major gifts while retaining some income from assets. Most of the previously mentioned ways of giving can also fund a charitable trust which retains income for a period of time (usually lifetime), after which the Westfield State Foundation may receive the assets. In some cases, a gift may be a combination of an outright gift and a trust to return income to the donor for a period of time.
Remainder Interest in Personal Residence
This can be a vacation home or a principal residence. You may continue to live in the property after giving it to the University and still claim an income tax deduction equal to the present value of the interest given away.
In addition to being the most common form of planned giving, a bequest to Westfield State helps to insure the future of the University without affecting your current personal finances. Donors have many options in determining how to leave a bequest to provide for maximum estate tax charitable deductions and benefit to the University.
Retirement Plan Gifts
Your retirement assets, accumulated over many years and invested in tax-deferred accounts, could ultimately be a large portion of your estate. You may wish to explore the benefit of designating the Westfield State Foundation as a primary or secondary (after your spouse) beneficiary on your retirement plans.
Life insurance is a distinctive vehicle to use in making a planned gift. Naming Westfield State Foundation as a beneficiary assures the donor that an intended amount (or percentage) of money will go to the University. As long as the premium is paid up, the face amount will be paid. Note the difference between term insurance and whole life (universal life is another matter). Insurance can be beneficial to donors with large estates (and trusts) who wish to protect their assets for family and charity.