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Gift & Estate Planning: Retirement Plans

Retirement Plans
September 2, 2019 Shawn Sweeney

Name the Jane Goodall Institute as a full or partial beneficiary of your Retirement plan and join us in helping to support effective and long-lasting conservation decisions and practices.

You may be surprised to find that taxes applied to your retirement plan assets often enable you to give more to your heirs.

When choosing assets to leave to charities, many advisors suggest retirement plans such as an IRA, 401(K), or 403(b) because assets from these plans are subject to income taxes as well as possible state and federal estate taxes. These must be paid directly by your heirs, but do not apply to charities.

This “double taxation” could, in some cases, amount to 65% or more of the retirement account’s value. Since nearly all other assets in your estate will avoid income taxes, they make a better choice to give to your family and friends, while making a charity such as JGI the direct beneficiary of your retirement plan. So, in the long run, this can result in your loved ones receiving more than if you had left them your retirement funds.

Your financial advisor can help you determine whether income from a gift plan or withdrawals from your retirement account would most benefit your heirs.

How it Works

  1. You name JGI as the beneficiary of a qualified retirement plan through a beneficiary designation form, ensuring assets will not be included in your taxable estate. An extra step may be required to designate a 401(k).
  2. After your lifetime, the residue of your plan passes to JGI tax-free and to any other named heirs.

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