Growing Stock, Growing Generosity
Individual donors are the backbone of charitable giving. According to a recent report by Giving USA, Americans donated over $324 billion to charities in 2020 which represented 69 percent of all charitable giving. While many individuals choose to support charities through cash donations, some donors have adopted a new way of giving in the form of stock gifts. In 2020, Fidelity Charitable reports that 68 percent of its contributions were made in the form of non-publicly and publicly-traded assets— a trend that has been on the rise for the past several years.
If an individual has owned stock for at least one year that has increased in value, they have the unique opportunity to make a philanthropic contribution to the cause of their choice. Donating stock offers several benefits to both the designated charities and the donors gifting them. When someone chooses to donate stock, they receive the same income tax savings as they would if they wrote a check, with the added benefit of eliminating capital gains taxes on the transfer, which can be as high as 20 percent.
DIVIDENDS FOR RESEARCH
Making a gift of securities to support scientific research is not a new practice for Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) donors. For longtime supporter Toby Gottesman, donating to LRF through appreciated stocks is a win-win. “I began donating to the Lymphoma Research Foundation 12 years ago and always thought that cash donations were the way to go,” says Gottesman. “However, years ago, I realized that I could make stock gifts and found this to be a great method to support the Foundation’s mission.”
Gottesman says that donating through stock allows him to give a “cheap gift that goes further,” due to the tax-saving benefit for both himself and LRF. “If I were to donate cash, I would have to sell the stock first and pay capital gains,” says Gottesman. “If I donate stock directly, I can add what I saved in taxes to my gift and therefore end up donating more in the long run.”
As a lymphoma survivor, Gottesman is grateful for the opportunity to support the type of research that helped to save his life, hoping that future lymphoma patients benefit from it the same way he did. “I am a survivor because of the medical knowledge and research that existed at the time I needed treatment, and I give so that the person who will be diagnosed in 10 years can survive as well,” he says.
PLANNING YOUR GIFT
Using assets other than cash allows donors more flexibility when planning gifts, and there are even more potential benefits when donors plan their gifts creatively. “LRF strives to make supporting our mission as easy as possible,” says Kate LeBoeuf, associate director of major gifts at the LRF. “Many of our donors have thoughtful and specific philanthropic goals. By accepting a variety of assets, we create flexibility for donors to advance cures for lymphoma by leveraging their assets in tax-advantageous ways.”
LRF has received nearly $4 million in support through gifts of securities, and the number of donors giving stocks has more than quadrupled in the last 10 years. “My hope is that more donors learn about how they can support LRF’s work in a way that is best for them,” says LeBoeuf. “Gifts of appreciated securities, charitable gift annuities, IRA rollover gifts and many other forms of planned giving, are some of the many giving avenues that fosters incredible partnerships between LRF and our donors.”
Stock gifts not only yield great benefits, but they are also easy to set up. Donors can instruct their broker to transfer shares or, if they have the physical securities, mail the certificates along with a stock power to LRF. Donors are encouraged to contact LRF of any plans for stock-transfer gifts to ensure that the process is seamless. “Finding a balance between financial and philanthropic goals can sometimes feel complicated,” says LeBoeuf. “However, we hope that our donors feel empowered to plan ahead to ensure their support for LRF continues into the future.”
Are you interested in making a gift of appreciated securities to the Lymphoma Research Foundation?
Visit lymphoma.org/plannedgiving to learn more and download helpful stock-transfer instructions.
Contact Kate LeBoeuf with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 646-531-5184.