Tom Meaglia, ChFC®

Chartered Financial Consultant


Investment Advisor Representative

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Meaglia Financial Consulting

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November/December 2018

Big Hearts: Giving to Charity

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Americans gave an estimated $390.05 billion to U.S. charities in 2016, according to Giving USA 2017: The Annual Report on Philanthropy for the Year 2016 (from the Giving USA Foundation, the Giving Institute and the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy). The total includes charitable contributions made by individuals, estates, foundations and corporations.

How to Choose
If you want to give to an organization that makes the most of your charitable giving, learn how much of each dollar goes toward the charity and how much is spent elsewhere. You can find some organizations with websites that evaluate the legitimacy of charities and how they spend contributions. Also look for a charity’s IRS Form 990 and ask to see the charity’s audited financial statement to ensure it meets the standards you want.

Importantly, match your giving objectives with a charity’s mission and demonstrated results. Look for charities that best match your values.

Get Help
If you make large charitable contributions, consider enlisting the aid of your advisor and an estate planning attorney. Although the federal estate tax exclusion is higher than in the past, some families may exceed it while also having to potentially deal with lower state estate and inheritance tax thresholds. Structured properly, charitable giving can both benefit your charity and reduce your estate taxes.


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