Planned Giving

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Gifts of Personal Property: The Details

Is this gift right for you?

A gift of personal property is for you if…

  • You hold artwork, antiques, or other personal property that you no longer wish to maintain.
  • You hold equipment or other items that would be useful to our mission.
  • You want to avoid capital gains tax on the transfer of these assets.

The IRS gives donors who contribute appreciated property, like securities and real estate, two tax breaks: a charitable deduction for the full fair market value of the asset, and no capital gains tax on the transfer to California Science Center.

The same benefits also encourage gifts of personal property: artwork, antiques, equipment, and other items that help us advance our mission.

If you are considering such a gift, please talk with us first. We can determine if the items can be used by us – a requirement for you to claim a full deduction. If you donate personal property that is liquidated for cash, the IRS will limit your charitable deduction to your cost basis in the property.

We do reserve the right to sell the property at a later date if it can no longer be used or properly cared for by California Science Center.

Planning points

  • You will need to secure an independent appraisal of the property to establish the amount of your deduction.
  • Most gifts of personal property are made to California Science Center outright. In some cases, it may be possible for you to arrange for life income to be paid to you in return for the gift. Consult with your advisors and our office before proceeding with such a plan.

Please contact us so that we can assist you through every step of the process.


The material presented on this Planned Giving website is not offered as legal or tax advice.
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