An alternative to a bequest gift is to designate the University of Delaware as a beneficiary of all or part of your retirement assets. This gift is simple because you can control the transfer of these assets at your death without changing your will or living trust. All you need to do is request (and complete) a new beneficiary designation form from your plan administrator. There is no need to modify your will or living trust.
A gift of retirement assets has the added advantage of being among the most tax-wise ways to make an estate gift. This is because your retirement assets, if left to individuals, will be subject to income tax when they receive distributions and, in the case of most non-spouses, those distributions must take place within 10 years, potentially pushing designated beneficiaries into higher tax brackets. With a gift to a non-profit such as UD, 100 percent of the funds are available for its charitable purposes. If you want to remember us in your estate plan, it is often better to leave other types of assets – cash, securities, real estate – to your heirs and give the more heavily taxed retirement asset to the University of Delaware.
Life Insurance policies can also be used to make a gift to UD. Complete and return to the insurance company a form designating that the University of Delaware receives all or a portion of the death benefit associated with your life insurance policy. As an alternative to naming UD as the beneficiary, you can transfer ownership of the policy. Transferring ownership results in an immediate income tax charitable deduction and potential income tax savings in the year of the gift.