IRA Charitable Donations

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If you are 70 1/2 or older, you are able to make a tax-free charitable gift from your individual retirement account (IRA) to help support the work of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank. You can transfer from your IRA directly to the Food Bank without being subject to income taxes on the distribution. This charitable gift from your IRA counts toward your required minimum distribution for the year.  (We encourage you to discuss with your professional advisor on how to make this type of gift.)

What is a charitable IRA rollover?

The charitable IRA rollover, or qualified charitable distribution (QCD), is a special provision allowing certain donors to exclude from taxable income -- and count toward their required minimum distribution -- certain transfers of Individual Retirement Account (IRA) assets that are made directly to public charities, including the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

How does this help me?

A charitable IRA rollover makes it easier to use IRA assets, during lifetime, to make charitable gifts.

Why will lifetime IRA gifts be easier?

Under current law, withdrawals from traditional IRAs and certain Roth IRAs are taxed as income, even if they are immediately directed to a charity. The donor receives a tax deduction for his or her donation, but various other federal, and sometimes state, tax rules can prevent the deduction from fully offsetting this taxable income. As a result, many donors have chosen not to use IRA assets for lifetime gifts. The charitable IRA rollover eliminates this problem.

What gifts would qualify for a charitable IRA rollover?

A gift that qualifies, technically termed a “qualified charitable distribution,” would be:

  1. Made by a donor age 70 1/2 or older; 
  2. Transferred from a traditional or Roth IRA directly to a permissible public charity, such as the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank; and
  3. Completed in calendar year for the same tax year.

Is there a limit on the amount that can be given?

Yes, there is a limit. An individual taxpayer's total charitable IRA rollover gifts cannot exceed $100,000 per tax year.

What about the required minimum distribution?

If you have not already taken your required minimum distribution in a given year, a qualifying rollover gift can count toward satisfying this requirement.

Is an income tax deduction also available?

No. The gift would be excluded from income, so providing a deduction in addition to that exclusion would create an inappropriate double tax benefit.

Why are Roth IRAs included? Aren't withdrawals from a Roth IRA tax-free?

Withdrawals from a Roth IRA may be tax-free only if the account has been open for longer than five years or if certain other conditions apply. Otherwise, withdrawals are taxed as if they came from a traditional IRA. Therefore, certain Roth IRAs could benefit from a charitable IRA rollover.

Can other retirement plans, such as 401(k) and 403(b) accounts, be used?

No. However, it may be possible to make a tax-free transfer from such other accounts to an IRA, from which a charitable rollover can then be made.

Can a gift be made to any charity?

No. Excluded are:    

  • Donor advised funds   
  • Supporting organizations    
  • Private foundations

Donations must be made directly to a directly to a permissible public charity, such as the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

Who can benefit from using the charitable IRA rollover to make a gift?

  • Persons with significant assets in an IRA
  • Persons making gifts that are large, relative to their income. (Because a charitable rollover is not included in taxable income, it does not count against the usual percentage limitations on using charitable deductions.)    
  • Persons having so few deductions that they choose not to itemize

Can a rollover gift be used to fund a charitable remainder trust or charitable gift annuity?

No. The donor can receive no benefits in return for the gift. This includes life income plan payments.

What if a withdrawal does not meet the requirements of a charitable IRA rollover?

It simply will be included in taxable income as other IRA withdrawals currently are. Is the charitable IRA rollover right for everyone? While this is a great option, other types of gifts may provide donors with more tax benefits. As with any gift planning question, donors should consult their tax professionals for specific advice.

Can I still make a gift with an IRA beneficiary designation?

Yes! Whether or not you choose to make a charitable IRA rollover gift, you can still designate the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank as a beneficiary to receive IRA assets after your lifetime. The lifetime charitable IRA rollover is simply another option for donors who would like to see their philanthropy at work now.

If I made a charitable IRA rollover gift in other tax years, can I do this again for the current tax year?

Yes. Even if you and your spouse both made the maximum $100,000 charitable IRA rollover gift to a qualifying charity during one or more previous years, you can still take advantage of this again for the current tax year.

Questions?

For questions regarding the activities of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, call 717.564.1700 or email development@centralpafoodbank.org.  For questions regarding your tax implications and eligibility, we recommend that you contact your financial consultant or tax adviser.

Disclaimer: This is for informational purposes only, financial and tax implications should be discussed with a licensed professional. The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank can not guarantee accuracy of  this information, please check with a professional before taking action.

Harrisburg

3908 Corey Road

Harrisburg, PA 17109

717.564.1700

717.561.4636 (fax)

Office Hours:
M-TR: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Williamsport

3301 Wahoo Drive

Williamsport, PA 17701

570.321.8023

570.321.8024 (fax)

Office Hours:
M-TR: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m - 3:00 p.m.

The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization.
EIN: #23-2202250


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