IRA Charitable Contributions

Written By: Ann Marie Moss, Director of Development & Communications

July 19, 2019

Many of us have individual retirement accounts (IRAs), maybe through our employers or a separate investment company, to make retirement more comfortable. For those of us over the age of 70 ½, we are required to take a minimum distribution from that account, Uncle Sam’s way of ensuring it’s spent in retirement instead of used as a savings account or inheritance.

For some, these required minimum distributions are unnecessary because of other investments or accounts, and occasionally, the distributions increase annual gross income enough that they also affect taxes paid – not ideal.

We’re bringing this to your attention not because we love talking taxes, but to be sure you know that all or part of that required minimum distribution can be directed to a nonprofit of your choice, avoiding negative tax implications or simply as a charitable giving vehicle.

Called a qualified charitable distribution (QCD), donations made in this way must be paid directly from the IRA account to the nonprofit. The process is easily coordinated with your IRA provider or through your financial advisor, and many people have found this to be an easy, effective way to make annual charitable contributions.   If you have questions, the best resource is your financial advisor or tax accountant. The IRS has some insights on their FAQ page, and while we are happy to answer basic questions and get you started, please note that we are not qualified to provide legal or financial advice.

Thank you for supporting The Women’s Center!

On the subject of IRAs, we’ll also note that designating a nonprofit as the beneficiary on an IRA account avoids significant inheritance and income taxes. If you have designated The Women’s Center as a beneficiary on your IRA, life insurance, or will, please let us know!