4 Planned Giving Opportunities You May Have Overlooked

Your organization doesn’t have to be a major museum, hospital or university to have a planned giving program. And a development officer doesn’t need to be an accountant or lawyer to seek planned gifts. Approximately two thirds of all planned gifts come in the form of bequests. And the more complicated charitable remainder trusts are generally established by the donor’s attorney. So you needn’t be afraid to promote legacy gifts. Don’t miss this tremendous opportunity to secure significant contributions. Here are a few options you can suggest to donors:


The donor’s attorney will draw up the will. What you need to know is that a bequest can take a few different forms. The donor can bequeath the entire estate, a percentage of the estate, a specific asset, or the remainder of the estate after all other provisions are satisfied.

Beneficiary Designation

The donor can designate your organization as the beneficiary of a financial account, retirement plan, or insurance policy.

Stock Gifts

It’s a simple matter for a donor to transfer stocks to your institution. All you need to do is to establish a brokerage account into which the donor can make the transfer.

Life Income Gifts

If you’ll take the time to learn the basic attributes of the various options, you can even promote trusts. You only need to be able to discuss the primary characteristics of the basic types. Just be sure that the donor seeks the assistance of a qualified attorney in setting one up.

It doesn’t matter whether your organization is a community college, a human service organization or a small museum; it can promote and accept planned gifts. And you don’t need to be an expert on all of the legal and tax implications. (You shouldn’t be offering legal or tax advice anyway.) Just make an effort to learn the basics, so that you can discuss the options intelligently.

Major Gift Opportunities Community College

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