Meridian’s Legacy programs provide options for friends and supporters to ensure the future of the Center and its houses. Through estate and planned gifts, the Meridian Legacy remembers the first 50 years by providing for the next 50 years.
The Linden Legacy Society honors friends who recognize Meridian’s role in international understanding. By committing support through planned and estate gifts, members provide a sound financial foundation for Meridian’s future.
You can support Meridian International Center and its mission in the ways outlined on this website. We appreciate your interest and support, and would be pleased to provide you and your counsel with additional information on the advantages of planned giving.
Gifts of Cash
If you itemize, you can lower your income taxes simply by writing us a check. Gifts of cash are fully deductible – up to a maximum of 50% of your adjusted gross income. For example, if your adjusted gross income for this year is $50,000, up to $25,000 of charitable gifts may be deducted this year. Any excess can generally be carried forward and deducted over as many as five subsequent years.
Gifts of Stock
If you own stock, it is often more tax-wise to contribute stock than cash. This is because a gift of appreciated stock generally offers a two-fold tax saving. First, you avoid paying any capital gains tax on the increase in value of the stock. Second, you receive an income tax deduction for the full fair market value of the stock.
We can be named as a beneficiary in your will in any one of a number of simple ways. For example, an outright gift – either a designated dollar amount or percentage of your estate – could be specified. Or, you may wish to provide for a contingent bequest or a remainder interest. You can easily add us to your will through an amendment to your will called a codicil; thus your entire will does not have to be redrafted.
Charitable Lead Trusts
Charitable lead trusts are essentially the reverse of the life income gifts described on the next page. The income from the trust is first paid to us; the charity’s interest leads the way (hence the name of the trust). With this trust, you transfer assets to a trustee who makes payments to us for a specified number of years, after which time the assets are transferred to your heirs. The charitable lead trust allows you to pass assets on to your children and grandchildren either completely free or substantially free of all estate and gift taxes! It can make good sense for anyone in the top estate and gift tax brackets.
Gifts of Life Insurance
A gift of life insurance can provide a significant charitable deduction. You could purchase a new policy or donate a policy that you currently own but no longer need. To receive a deduction, designate us as both the owner and beneficiary of the life insurance policy. Check with your insurance agent for the details.
Life Income Gifts
Life income gifts allow you to increase your income, receive a charitable contribution deduction and avoid capital gains taxes. If you own stock that is paying you low dividends, maybe 2% or 3%, a “life-income” gift may be an appropriate gift. You could transfer the stock to us and establish a “charitable remainder unitrust” or “charitable remainder annuity trust” that would provide you with a 5% or greater annual return. This income would be paid to you and/or a loved one for life, after which the assets would be distributed outright to us. Through such an arrangement, you would be increasing your income and making a meaningful (and tax-deductible) contribution to us at the same time.
Sample Language download in *.doc
If your bequest is to be cash or securities:
I give [the residue of my estate], or [____% of the resident of my estate], or [the sum of ____dollars] to Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C. **
or real estate:
I hereby instruct my [executor/executrix/personal representative] to sell my real estate located at [address/city/state], and to give the net sales proceeds to Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C. **
or for the purpose of a named endowment:
I give [the residue of my estate], or [___% if the residue of my estate], or [the sum of ____dollars] to Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C. If the amount is sufficient to establish a named endowment fund, I direct that an endowment fund be created and named the [Mr. and Mrs. John Doe Fund]. **
or an object for the collections...
...you should be aware that it is Meridian policy to accept objects only if we intend to accession them into the collections, unless the donor or estate indicates otherwise. In order to ensure that those objects acquired are appropriate to the collections and can be properly cared for and used, the acceptance of objects must be very selective. If you are considering a bequest of objects to the Meridian collections, our planned giving professionals can put you in touch with the appropriate persons.
** if you intent to further restrict your bequest to more specific programs or uses, please discuss your plans with us in advance to ensure that your wishes may be carried out.
Tax ID #____________________________
Meridian International Center
1630 Crescent Place, NW
Washington, DC 20009
Meridian International Center is not engaged in rendering legal or tax advisory services. The above language is intended solely for general informational purposes. For advice and assistance in specific cases, the services of legal counsel should be obtained.
The discussion herein is general in nature and may not apply to all individuals. Prospective donors are urged to consult their personal tax and financial advisors concerning the specific consequences of making gifts to the Institute. We would be pleased to discuss, in confidence, ways in which you may support the Institute. These measures may also have an impact on your estate planning.
Copyright MMXI by Calder P. Sinclair