Being Financially Savvy – Prioritizing Family with Planned Gifts

parent and child dressed as super heroes

For many United Way supporters, Planned Giving allows them to prioritize family and be financially savvy at the same time.

Hope Legacy Society member, Donald Halley (IBM) shares how planned giving helped to express gratitude to his family.   


Many of us share a gratitude for family and supportive relationships that help us thrive – emotionally, physically, and spiritually. I am grateful for my family, and I would like to share a story about how planned giving helped me to express that gratitude. 

Several years ago, my parents reached the stage of life where they could no longer live completely on their own. My sister became their primary caregiver, giving of her time to complete tasks that my parents could no longer perform. The role of caregiver is challenging for anyone. I deeply appreciated my sister for fulfilling this role. 

During this time, Roth IRAs were introduced. I determined that converting my existing traditional IRA to a Roth IRA would be best for me in the long run, but the conversion resulted in a large immediate spike in my taxable income. I found that a Charitable Gift Annuity (CGA) met several of my goals at that time. It allowed me to reduce the tax impact of the IRA conversion, contribute to the mission of one of my favorite non-profit organizations, and express my appreciation to my sister by supplementing her retirement income. 

A CGA is a contract between a donor and a charity. A portion of the contribution is considered to be a charitable gift, which provides an immediate tax deduction for the donor. The other portion is viewed as an investment for the annuitant(s), which provides a steady stream of income to them for life. The income stream can begin immediately or can be deferred to some point in the future. I chose my sister as the annuitant, and deferred her income stream to begin when she reached retirement age. Many donors choose themselves and/or their spouse as the annuitants.

The benefits of a CGA include:
- Income stream for the rest of your life or the life of someone you care about
- Immediate (partial) tax deduction, based on the annuitant(s) life expectancy and the anticipated income stream
- Potential for a portion of the income stream to be tax-free
- Possibility of donating many types of assets: cash, securities, personal property
- Reduced or eliminated capital gains tax liability for gifts of appreciated securities and personal property
- Supporting an organization you care about

If you would like to learn more about how a CGA might be of benefit to you, your financial plan, or your philanthropic goals, we invite you to speak with your financial advisor. If you would like references to some professional advisors, or are interested in a CGA with United Way of Olmsted County, contact Laken Jefferson at or 507-529-4830.

Don Halley


Click HERE to learn more about the benefits of planned giving.