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Helping People Age with Dignity

Acting wisely important in charitable giving

Many individuals here in Massachusetts give to charity. There are many different charitable giving goals an individual can have, both for gifts made during their life and after-death gifts set up in their estate plan. 

Lack of proper care when it comes to one's charitable giving could compromise one's ability to meet one's charitable giving goals. 

One thing it is important for a person to be careful about is who exactly they make charitable gifts to. Sadly, charitable gifts made through some organizations may end up benefiting the intended charitable cause far less than one was hoping. This can be seen in some statistics from here in Massachusetts.

According to the statistics, of all the money given to charities through Massachusetts-based professional solicitors in 2014, which added up to over $543 million, only around 62 percent actually ended up going to the charities.

Thus, when planning to make a charitable donation through a professional solicitor, it can be important do some research into the solicitor's practices, their legitimacy and how much of the money they collect goes to the charity they are collecting for. Being careful about what organizations one donates through can help with avoiding a situation in which a large portion of one's charitable donation is diverted away from the intended cause.

It is also important for a person to exercise care when it comes to the mechanisms they set up for charitable giving. Take mechanisms in an estate plan for charitable giving for instance. There are a variety of different things a person could set up in an estate plan for after-death charitable giving, including charitable giving trusts. If one doesn't carefully consider their charitable giving goals when picking what charitable giving mechanisms to use in their estate plan, they could end up with mechanisms that aren't terribly well-suited for their particular goals. Lawyers can help individuals with aligning their estate plan with their goals for after-death charitable giving.

Source: Boston Globe, "Nearly 40 percent of charity funds kept by fund-raisers in 2014, report finds," Sarah Roberts, Dec. 1, 2015

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