planned giving

Bequest In Your Estate Planning

Including the Benny’s Friends in your Trust or Will, is a meaningful way to help us continue to save animals in need. Many of our programs and services have benefitted from individuals who had the foresight to include the Benny’s Friends in their Estate Planning.

Ways You Can Give Through a Will or Trust:
  • Leave a specific dollar amount or asset to Benny’s Friends.
  • Designate a percentage of your estate to be given through your will or living trust.
  • Give only the remainder, or residue, of your estate, or that which remains after bequests to loved ones have been made.

The following is an example of suggested language to include in your will/trust:

“I give and bequeath to Benny’s Friends, a not-for-profit corporation, with principal offices presently located at 23055 Sherman Way #4281,  West Hills, CA, 91308, the sum of $ _______, or _______% of my estate, to be used for the accomplishment of its general purpose (or for a specific purpose as indicated)”.

Ways You Can Give Through Other Means:
  • An outright gift of cash
  • Securities
  • Personal property
  • Real estate (real estate is accepted on a case-by-case basis with minimum valuation considerations and a written appraisal)

You may designate your bequest in two ways:

  • For the general purposes of the Benny’s Friends (an unrestricted bequest)
  • To be used to support a particular program (a restricted bequest)

The material presented in this website is intended as general educational information on the topics discussed herein and should not be interpreted as legal, financial or tax advice. Please seek the specific advice of your tax advisor, attorney, and/or financial planner to discuss the application of these topics to your individual situation.

Retirement Assets

Retirement assets are one of the most beneficial gifts you can give to Benny’s Friends. These funds grow tax-free until the time of withdrawal. With the innovative use of these assets, you are able to contribute generously to Benny’s Friends as well as provide for your loved ones. Many taxes on these plans can be avoided or reduced through a carefully planned charitable gift.

Consider these charitable approaches:

Outright gift through beneficiary designation.
You can name Benny’s Friends as the beneficiary or contingent beneficiary of your retirement assets after your lifetime. When a retirement account is left to a charity, the organization does not pay any income tax whereas your heirs may pay income tax if they inherit your retirement funds. Your retirement plan’s administrator can provide a beneficiary form for you to name Benny’s Friends as your sole or partial beneficiary.

Charitable remainder trust after a donor’s lifetime.
You can name a trust as the ultimate beneficiary of excess or unused retirement assets. After your lifetime, the trust can provide income to heirs for a period of years, after which time the trust monies can fund charitable endeavors. Since it is a charitable trust, there is more money available to generate income for heirs.

The material presented in this website is intended as general educational information on the topics discussed herein and should not be interpreted as legal, financial or tax advice. Please seek the specific advice of your tax advisor, attorney, and/or financial planner to discuss the application of these topics to your individual situation.

Life Insurance

Life insurance is often overlooked as an asset that you can use to make gifts to Benny’s Friends. There are a number of ways to support Benny’s Friends with an insurance-related gift.

Add a beneficiary to your policy.
It is relatively simple to make a change to the beneficiary/beneficiaries of your insurance policy without changing your will or other aspects of your estate plan. Just ask your insurance company for a form that will allow you to make Benny’s Friends a beneficiary of your insurance policy.

Give a paid-up policy.
You can transfer ownership of a paid-up life insurance policy to Benny’s Friends.  After the transfer, Benny’s Friends can elect to either cash in the policy right away or keep the policy and receive the death benefit later. You would receive an immediate income tax deduction for either the cash surrender value or the basis (usually the cost), whichever is less.

Making Benny’s Friends the owner and beneficiary.
You can take out a policy and make Benny’s Friends the owner and beneficiary of the policy. Premium payments can be made by you directly to the insurance company or by Benny’s Friends,  by way of your annual gift to the organization. Whichever way the premiums are paid, you can take an income tax deduction.

The material presented in this website is intended as general educational information on the topics discussed herein and should not be interpreted as legal, financial or tax advice. Please seek the specific advice of your tax advisor, attorney, and/or financial planner to discuss the application of these topics to your individual situation.

Charitable Remainder Trust

A Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) is a life-income arrangement that provides you and/or other beneficiaries with a stream of income for life or for a period of years. After the trust terminates, the principal, or “remainder interest,” goes to Benny’s Friends. Unlike other life-income arrangements, CRTs are separately invested and managed trusts. Please note that Benny’s Friends does not manage these trusts for donors.

This is the most flexible of life-income plans, and a powerful way for you to benefit along with your heirs and Benny’s Friends. Some versions of CRTs can be funded with closely held stock, partnership interests, real estate, and in some instances, tangible personal property such as works of art. You can choose to receive a variable or fixed income (beginning immediately) for life or a term of years. There is no limitation on the number of beneficiaries of a CRT.

CRT Benefits:

  • When appreciated assets are donated to the trust, they can be sold without incurring capital gains tax, allowing the entire proceeds from the sale to be reinvested.
  • You can receive a charitable income tax deduction in the year the gift is made, with an additional five years to carry over any unused deduction.
  • You can add to certain types of CRTs at any time.
  • Through reinvestment within the trust, you can achieve diversification of a previously concentrated asset.
  • Any assets that you contribute to a CRT are immediately removed from your estate, reducing your estate tax exposure.

Basic Types of CRTs:

  • Unitrust (CRUT): This type of trust pays a variable income based on a fixed percentage (for example, between 5 and 6 percent) of the trust assets, revalued once each year. One advantage of a unitrust is that your income can increase as the trust principal grows over time. This type of CRT allows you to make additional contributions at any time.
  • Annuity Trust (CRAT): This type of trust pays a fixed annual income that is determined when the trust is established. The annuity trust is often preferred by those who are interested in the security of a constant return.

The material presented in this website is intended as general educational information on the topics discussed herein and should not be interpreted as legal, financial or tax advice. Please seek the specific advice of your tax advisor, attorney, and/or financial planner to discuss the application of these topics to your individual situation.