All About Estates

Category: Estate Donations

Total 24 Posts

Charitable Donations – What Do You Get in Return?

Each December, we are reminded that this is the season of giving. As we are encouraged to lend our support to worthy causes, it is helpful to understand the extent to which donors can control the use of their funds and oversee the direction of a charitable project. Meddling in…

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Art and Fair Market Value

Fall art auction week in Toronto is just past. The biggest is run by Heffel Fine Art Auction. The results for the two Heffel auctions illustrate the challenge of determining fair market value in art. The auction catalogue listed a number of estates and charitable foundation as consignors. Clearly art valuation…

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Charities and Political Activities

  A battle has been waging in Canada since 2012 over “political activities” by registered charities. The previous Federal Government initiated an audit by Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) of 60 registered charities, which was discontinued in 2017 by the current government. On July 16, 2018, the Ontario Superior Court of…

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Artist’s Foundations

In the U.S. there is a generation of contemporary artists who have never been richer and they are endowing – with art and money – some significant foundations. Cy Twombly Foundation, for example, reportedly has assets of over $1.5 billion. There is even a support initiative called the Artist-Endowed Foundation…

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Donate to Eliminate Clauses

Last week I received a call from a client who wished to include a “donate to eliminate” clause in his will. His goal is to wipe-out all taxes in his estate by giving just the right amount to his favorite charities. A few years ago, this planning idea was all…

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Intrinsic v. Extrinsic Giving

There is a fundraising truism that says you don’t get money unless you ask for it. But as estate planning professional know that’s not always true. A difference between lifetime gifts made directly to charity and estate donations is motivation. Often lifetime gifts are extrinsically motivated; estate donations are more…

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Estate Donations for Charities Not Yet Registered

The 2018 Federal Budget hinted that Canadian newspapers may be able to receive charitable status in the future.  As I’ve previously written, making non-profit and local journalism an eligible charitable purpose is a timely idea — and it has implications for donor planning their estates.  The Federal Budget got me…

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Charity v. Benevolence

Last week I received two inquiries from caring colleagues hoping to help individuals in need.  One person had cancer and had lost his business, while the other was a sick child who perhaps could benefit from her own charitable foundation.  As heart-rending as these stories are, neither qualify as “charity”. …

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Robert and Signe McMichael’s Complicated Legacy

Robert and Signe McMichael, the namesake of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, were savvy art collectors who made some painful philanthropic and estate planning mistakes.  Visionary Collectors     Starting in 1955, when they were in their early 30s, they started buying landscape paintings by the Group of Seven and…

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Protecting Charitable Interests

Are charities in a will easier to challenge when there are more than five entities named?   This topic came up at a recent lunch with estate planning and litigation colleagues.  One told a cautionary tale of a large estate that was litigated away from a dozen named charities.  The charities…

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