Congress Encourages gifts from IRAs to Charity

Gift to CharityOver the past several years, Congress encouraged donors over 70 ½ years of age to give funds from their Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) to charities by not subjecting the donor to income taxation which is normally the case when an individual makes a withdrawal from his or her IRA. This law (which has been temporary and extended annually in recent years) has become permanent due to a recent Congressional act.

Under this (now permanent) law, the most an individual (over 70 ½) can transfer directly from their IRA to a qualified charity is $100,000 at any time during the calendar year (including 2015). This transfer will satisfy the required minimum distribution of the individual. There is no income tax on the gift. Due to this favorable treatment, there is no tax deduction for the gift to the charity.  In effect, Congress is encouraging taxpayers to give to charity – which is consistent with other portions of the Internal Revenue Code.

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