All About Estates

Category: Estate Donations

Total 58 Posts

Charitable Prizes

When Lindbergh flew from New York to Paris in 1927, it was inspired by the $25,000 Orteig Prize. Also in the 1920s, when the International Math Union wanted to honour under 40-year-old rising mathematicians, Toronto math superstar J.C. Fields (under)funded a medal that has been awarded ever since. Since the…

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Proving Charitable Purposes

Charitable purpose trusts are given special status in the law. While most other types of trusts must have a clear end date, charitable purpose trusts may live forever. All other types of trusts have to have specific and defined beneficiaries, yet charitable purpose trusts may exist in order to further…

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Donor-Advised Funds: Benefits and Drawbacks of the Increasingly Popular Means of Philanthropic Giving

A donor-advised fund is established when a donor makes a contribution to a foundation or financial institution and that fund operates much like a trust fund in that the donor (like a settlor) does not retain legal ownership over any property they place in the fund. However, the foundation or financial institution administering the property “provides administrative and investment assistance to the donor and gives the donor advisory privileges about how it should deal with the donated property.”

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Name That Charity!

“Name That Charity” sounds like a failed 1960s game show. Instead, it is an approach to estate planning that paradoxically may discourage charitable giving. This is an observation made by Kathy Hawkesworth of the Edmonton Community Foundation in a recent presentation to the Society of Estate and Trust Practitioner (STEP)….

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Estate Donations of Private Company Shares

One of the concerns about the “estate donation” rules when they were introduced in 2016 is illiquid property would be harder to donate and administer. Perhaps the most challenging type of illiquid property is private company shares. Five years of experience with the system has validated some concerns and produced…

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Restricted Charitable Bequests

One the biggest trends in philanthropy of the last thirty-years is the rise of donor-directed or restricted giving.  Donors want more control, which typically results in more restrictions being placed on gifts. But there are risks of placing restrictions on a charitable gift by will. Failure and Cy Pres Simply,…

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Charitable remainder trusts: what are they and when are they useful?

A charitable remainder trust (CRT), although not widely used in Canada, can be a useful charitable giving tool that generates an immediate tax credit for the donor. In an inter vivos context, an individual establishes an alter ego trust and transfers property to the trust on a tax-deferred basis. The trust holds…

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How long is perpetuity?

    “Is perpetuity 21 years?”, asked a charity colleague.  “Well, no, it’s forever.  Or until the end of time, or as long as we collectively exist,” I answered. Despite my emphatic response, the question is a good one because it underscores the inherent meaninglessness of the phrase “in perpetuity”…

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When Private Foundations Die

Private foundations are believed to be durable entities.  Perpetuity is assumed.  Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) data shows, however, that 2,319 private foundations closed during the period 2000 to 2021. Growth in Private Foundations There are currently 6,213 private foundations registered in Canada.  The private foundation is the fastest growing category…

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One in Ten: Why Bequest Donors Don’t Inform Charities

One in ten.  That, according to charitable sector studies, is how many estate donors inform the charities in their will of their intentions.  While this ratio varies by charity it underscores a fascinating paradox.  Bequest donors trust charities enough to make them beneficiaries of their estate, but they don’t trust…

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