St. Francis of Assisi, the founder of the Franciscans and the patron of our city, appreciated all of creation as a gift from God. He saw everything that he had not as his own but as a freely given gift from God. Gifts are given and are meant to be

Effective estate planning usually takes time, effort and a good attorney. In the end your plan will allow your family to avoid the delay, dissension and needless expense that often occurs when a loved one dies without a Will. Once you have taken care of your family’s needs, please consider a thoughtful bequest to St. Anthony’s.

Can St. Anthony Foundation help me get my estate planning done?
How do I include St. Anthony Foundation in my will or living trust?
What’s the big advantage of making St. Anthony Foundation a beneficiary of my retirement plan?
What kind of donors should consider a charitable remainder trust?
How can I give my home and keep it, too?
Why should I make a Planned Gift to St. Anthony Foundation?
What should I do if I have already remembered St. Anthony Foundation in my estate plan?
Does St. Anthony’s accept Charitable Gift Annuities
Can you provide me with an estimate of my tax and income benefits?

Q. Can St. Anthony Foundation help me get my estate planning done?
A. Yes. Just ask for our complimentary estate planning kit. The kit includes:

A readable but authoritative introduction to Wills, living trusts and basic estate planning
An Estate Planning Inventory Form to help you get a clearer notion on the worth of your estate
Information on how to remember St. Anthony Foundation in your estate plan

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Q. How do I include St. Anthony Foundation in my will or living trust?
A. The most common way people remember St. Anthony Foundation in a will or living trust is through a charitable bequest. You do not have to rewrite your current documents. You simply add an amendment, called a codicil, to your will or living trust. Here is some suggested language you can have your attorney review:
“I give, devise and bequeath to St. Anthony Foundation (tax I.D. 94-1513140), located in San Francisco, California, the sum of ________________________________ dollars ($ _______________)

(or state a percentage of your estate, or describe real or personal property, including exact location) for the benefit of its general purposes (or specify the St. Anthony Foundation program you wish to support).
Your bequest is entirely under your control during life and becomes irrevocable only at death. If you have questions about bequests, contact us at (415) 241-2600 or

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Q. What’s the big advantage of making St. Anthony Foundation a beneficiary of my retirement plan?
A. A designation in your IRA or other retirement plan may be a very cost-effective way of making a gift to St. Anthony Foundation. If you leave your retirement plan to your children, they will have to pay income tax on either a lump sum distribution or the income stream from the plan. St. Anthony Foundation does not pay this tax. Here’s an example of what this can mean to your heirs:

A widower died a few years ago. He left his $300,000 house to charity and his $300,000 retirement plan to his relatives. He should have done just the opposite. The relatives had to pay income tax on the $300,000 in the retirement plan, an $80,000 cost to them. If they had received the home, and the charity had received the retirement plan payment, no one would have paid income tax.

For more information on the advantages of retirement gifts to St. Anthony Foundation, contact us at (415) 241-2600 or

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Q. What kind of donors should consider a charitable remainder trust?
A. Donors who want income for life, bypass of capital gains tax on stock or real estate, reduced taxes, and the satisfaction of providing for a good cause like St. Anthony Foundation.

First, a few words about charitable trusts generally. Anything you place in a charitable trust—cash, stock, real estate—is invested by the trustee to pay you income for the rest of your life and, if you wish, pay your heirs for life or for a term of years. After the death of all income beneficiaries, what remains in the trust passes to St. Anthony Foundation.

Your trust may provide you with some important tax benefits:

  1. An immediate income tax deduction for a percentage of your gift. We will be happy to give you an idea of the size of your deduction. We simply need to know the ages of the income beneficiary(ies) and the payout rate of the trust.
  2. No tax on the sale of appreciated property. From the donor’s point of view, this is often the most important tax benefit. Sometimes thousands of dollars that would have gone in capital gains taxes remain in the trust generating income to the income beneficiaries.
  3. The trust principal is not subject to estate tax. Property that might otherwise be subject to federal estate tax, which can be has high as 45%, is preserved from estate tax entirely.
    Appreciated real estate is often an excellent asset to place in a charitable trust. Mature investment properties are frequently earning only two, three, or four percent of their fair market value per year. When these properties are sold and the proceeds reinvested by the trust, earnings often increase significantly.

Under ordinary circumstances, owners face substantial capital gains taxes when they sell rental properties or commercial real estate. In some cases personal residences are also subject to capital gains taxes even after the $500,000 exemption has been used. In any case, because your charitable trust will be selling the property, there will be no capital gains tax due when the real estate is sold. Thus the entire net proceeds from the sale can be reinvested to produce more income for you.

Gifts of appreciated stock are ideal for funding a charitable remainder trust because the stock can be reinvested by the trust for greater income while bypassing capital gains taxes at the time of the sale.
Some people find it useful to give an undivided percentage interest of real estate to a charitable trust rather than all of it. For example:

A donor contributed 75% of a vacant lot through a charitable trust. When the lot was sold, about $70,000 came directly to her from the sale while $210,000 remained in the trust. Some of her $70,000 was taxable, but she used the income tax deduction generated by her gift to the trust to offset the tax due on the gain built into the $70,000 she received.

There are two basic types of charitable remainder trusts. An annuity trust will pay you a fixed dollar amount for the rest of your life. A unitrust will pay you a fixed percentage of the trust principal each year, so if the value of the trust principal increases over time, your income increases with it. By law, your trust must pay you at least 5% of principal. You may choose a higher payout rate if you wish, but the higher the payout rate the lower your income tax charitable contribution deduction.

Selecting the highest rate possible may not work in your best interests for another reason. If trust principal declines under the strain of meeting the higher rate, your income will decline with it. On the other hand, a lower payout rate may allow the principal to grow, and your income will grow with it.

Additions can be made to a unitrust at any time, but you can contribute to an annuity trust only once.
Finally, your trust must have a trustee. If you have an individual trust tailored to your circumstances, the trustee can be a commercial institution such as a bank or trust company, an individual with professional experience in trust management, a relative, or yourself. There are some complications in acting as trustee yourself, but it can be done if you understand and comply with IRS regulations. St. Anthony Foundation will be happy to supply you with a list of possible trustees or information on being your own trustee.

The basic advantages of charitable trusts are not difficult to understand:

  • diversification of your assets without incurring capital gains taxes
  • lifetime income
  • immediate income tax benefits
  • reduction of estate tax
  • the satisfaction of providing for a good cause

There are even ways these trusts can benefit your heirs that we have not covered. But the first thing you should do is find out if a charitable trust makes sense for you.

St. Anthony Foundation will provide you with tax and income calculations tailored to your particular situation. This will give you and your advisors the information needed to make an informed decision as to whether a charitable trust meets your financial and philanthropic objectives. All information is provided confidentially and without cost or obligation. We at St. Anthony Foundation deeply appreciate your willingness to help continue our work.
For a personalized analysis, contact us at (415) 241-2600 or

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Q. How can I give my home and keep it, too?
A. A charitable life estate agreement allows you to give a personal residence or farm to St. Anthony Foundation while retaining the right to live there for life. Donors who enter a life estate agreement receive an immediate income tax deduction. The deduction is based on the present value of the home discounted by the estimated length of time the charity must wait to receive the home. To put it simply, a person age 70 will receive a larger deduction than a person age 50, all other things being equal.

The IRS grants the deduction even though you continue to enjoy the full use of your home. But the IRS also expects you to take full responsibility for the care and maintenance of your home. Life tenancy agreements simply continue with home care as it is. You handle maintenance, property taxes, insurance and other expenses.
The major benefits to you are continued use of your home, an immediate charitable income tax deduction, the avoidance of probate, the avoidance of estate tax on the property, and the satisfaction of making a substantial gift to St. Anthony Foundation during your lifetime. For further information, contact us at (415) 241-2600 or

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Q. Why should I make a Planned Gift to St. Anthony Foundation?
A. St. Anthony Foundation serves the poor among us with respect and compassion. We feed, heal, shelter, clothe, and lift the spirits of those in need, and work to create a society in which all people flourish. We do this through a network of eleven life-sustaining programs that serve San Francisco’s most marginalized population. The St. Anthony Dining Room and the Free Medical Clinic are the two services that most of our guests find first, which may lead them to St. Anthony’s transitional housing, job training, and drug and alcohol recovery programs. Your gift will ensure that St. Anthony’s is here for our poor and homeless neighbors tomorrow, as well as today.

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Q. What should I do if I have already remembered St. Anthony Foundation in my estate plan?
A. We would be honored to enroll you in St. Anthony Foundation’s Legacy Circle. Please let us know of your bequest by calling contact us at (415) 241-2600 or

Or print out the enrollment form and mail to:

St. Anthony Foundation
Attn: Planned Giving
150 Golden Gate Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94102

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Gifts that benefit you: Charitable Gift Annuities

The charitable gift annuity is the oldest and best known of charitable gifts that pay donors income for life. Charitable remainder trusts also pay donors income for life, give them an immediate income tax deduction and relief from capital gains tax.

The charitable gift annuity is guaranteed by the issuing charity. The payments are fixed, and so completely predictable. The charitable gift annuity allows you to make a gift to a good cause while giving you a current income tax deduction and payments for life. In this way, some donors discover they can make a far more generous future gift to St. Anthony Foundation than they thought possible.

A gift annuity is simple to create. You fund your annuity with a gift of cash or stock. You are then guaranteed a fixed payment monthly, quarterly, semiannually, or annually for life. You must be at least 65 when the payments begin and your annuity must be created with gifts having a total value of at least $10,000.
Your gift annuity can provide lifetime payments for one or two people. Both plans generate an immediate charitable tax deduction and partially bypass capital gains tax. In addition, part of your payment will be tax-free and all of your gift will pass to St. Anthony Foundation free of estate tax.

St. Anthony Foundation Gift Annuity Program: St. Anthony Foundation’s gift annuity program appeals to those who prefer predictable payments to variable income. A St. Anthony Foundation gift annuity provides you with fixed, guaranteed payments, along with the satisfaction of making a significant future gift to the agency.
Annuity rates vary with age. The older you are, the higher your rate. Payments once established remain the same for life. The following are some current single-life annuity rates.

Age: Rate:
65 5.3%
70 5.8%
75 6.5%
80 7.5%
85 8.4%
90+ 9.8%

Here’s an example:

Mary Edwards, age 75, establishes a $10,000 charitable gift annuity contract to benefit St. Anthony Foundation. In exchange for her gift, St. Anthony Foundation pays her $650 annually for life. $471 of her $650 payment is tax-free for twelve years. She also receives a $4,162 charitable income tax deduction.

For a confidential estimate of your rate and deduction, call St. Anthony Foundation’s planned giving specialist Phil Murphy at (415) 457-7482 or email

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Q. Can you provide me with an estimate of my tax and income benefits?
A. Yes, we can provide you with estimates of the tax and income benefits you will receive if you take out a charitable gift annuity, or create a charitable remainder trust. We need to know the birth dates of those who will receive income from these charitable tools and the kind of gift you have in mind (cash, stock, real estate). These calculations are for educational purposes only and should be reviewed by qualified independent advisers of your choosing. For calculations confidentially provided, contact us at (415) 241-2600 or

Click here to download a Sample Estate Inventory Form.

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