Tis the Season: 3 Important Reminders for Charitable Giving

No doubt you’ve heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but have you ever heard of Giving Tuesday (#GivingTuesday)?

Giving Tuesday was inaugurated in 2012 as a global initiative to kick off the “charitable season” of making year-end commitments to worthwhile causes. It is encouraging to see the amount of giving that is done in our country, but you need to be aware that the IRS is particular about giving you a tax deduction for your charitable contributions.

The date of “delivery” of a gift is what marks the year for deduction, the value of the gift and whether the gift is considered short-term or long-term property.

Here are 3 important considerations to get proper credit for a 2017 tax deduction:

1) For checks that are mailed, the date that matters is the postal mark date of the U.S. Post Office (be careful if you use online postage services or a private postal meter, they don’t always count as official “postage dates”)

2) For gifts of securities, the date of the gift is the receiving date of the transfer at the charitable institution (or their appointed advisor/broker). The process of transferring securities can often take as much as a week to complete.

3) For gifts of tangible property, the date of the gift is when the property is delivered and the title to the property has been effectively changed. There are very specific rules regarding gifts of tangible property that warrant discussing with your tax advisor.

Key takeaway: Charitable giving is an important part of any financial plan. There may be considerable tax benefits to gifting securities or property before cash. Please reach out to us if we may assist you with your year-end giving strategies.