When to Ask

when to discuss charitable solutions

Why raise charitable giving at all?

Significant giving opportunities often arise when clients are making major business, personal, and financial decisions.  After securing individual and family finances, your client may be open to discuss their social capital.

One of the simplest and most important things you can do to help your clients enjoy the benefits of charitable giving is to ask them the giving question: “Are there any charitable or community needs you would like to consider?”

The Community Foundation can work with you and your client to recommend the best charitable solution. The following are some typical scenarios:

  • Year-end tax planning. Your client just earned a large bonus or received an inheritance and wants to give a portion back to the community, but has no time to decide on the most deserving charities. Recommend establishing a fund through their community foundation for an immediate tax deduction, and the ability to tailor and coordinate their giving to maximize results and minimize administrative headaches. Your client can then work together with the community foundation to determine the charitable organizations that will benefit from their gift.

  • Preserving an estate. Estate planning identifies significant taxes going to Canada Revenue Agency, but your client wants to direct dollars for local benefit. The community foundation can work with you and your client to reduce their taxable estate through a charitable bequest or other planned gift. Your client’s gift will create a legacy of caring in the community that stays true to their charitable intent forever.

  • Establishing a private foundation. Your client is thinking about establishing a private foundation, but is looking for a simpler, more cost efficient alternative. The community foundation can help you and your client analyze the pros and cons of creating a Donor Advised Fund or a private foundation.

  • Sale or disposition of highly appreciated stock. Your client has appreciated stock and wants to use a portion of the gains for charitable giving, but the identified charities are too small to accept direct stock gifts. Suggest establishing a fund at a community foundation with a gift of appreciated stock. Your client receives a tax deduction on the full market value, while avoiding the capital gains tax that would otherwise arise from.

  • Sale of the stock. Your client can even be involved in recommending uses for the gift, including the organizations and programs they care about most.

  • Sale of a business. Your client owns highly appreciated stock in a company that is about to be acquired. The community foundation can work with you to suggest several ways to structure a charitable gift (including the use of planned giving techniques) to help your client reduce capital gains tax and maximize impact to the community.

  • Strategic giving. Your client is passionate about helping meet a specific community need and wants to make a meaningful gift. You and your client can work with our grant making experts to explore community needs and programs and then direct gift dollars to make the greatest impact.

  • Sale of real estate. Your client is interested in “downsizing” and simplifying life by selling some property. These transactions have tax ramifications that may be reduced with charitable giving.

  • Marking a milestone. Whether your client is celebrating a corporate anniversary, a personal milestone (such as a significant birthday, graduation or birth) or marking the passing of a loved one, naming a fund at your community foundation can be a fitting way to remember a particular person or time in your life.

*Interested in learning more on how to help you in your work with clients, visit the Community Foundations of Canada Professional Advisors eResource toolkit.

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