We thank all our planned-gift donors for their generous support. Here are some of their stories.
I have been part of Notre Dame for as long as I can remember! From Sr. Cecilia Wallace’s first-grade classroom at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School to high school years at Notre Dame, Belmont, to serving as principal now at my alma mater, I count so many Notre Dame Sisters as mentors and friends. It has always been my hope that someday I would have the opportunity to give back financially to the Sisters who formed and nurtured me as a person and educator.
When I mentioned my hope to the staff in the Province Development Office, I was told about a way I could, in fact, make a more significant gift and at the same time receive some income when I retire. What could be better? After going to the Sisters’ website to learn about planned gift options, it makes me smile to think that my own story will now be on their website! If it encourages others to do something similar, I will be very pleased.
Making a gift of a Deferred Gift Annuity to Sisters of Notre Dame this year allowed me to give them a larger gift than I would have thought possible because it also assures me that several years from now, the Annuity will provide regular income for me at a higher rate than a CD or mutual fund would do. I also appreciate the tax deduction I now receive and the future income I will receive some of which will be tax-free.
I made my gift in honor of Sr. Cecilia Wallace who taught me to read, to write, to compute, to think, and to reflect and who always modeled what I try to do now in my role as Principal: be attentive to one student at a time and let each one know that she is a special part of the Notre Dame community. I encourage other former students and friends of the Sisters to consider a Gift Annuity or Deferred Gift Annuity as a way of thanking them “for teaching us whatever was necessary to prepare us for life.”
We’re getting a little older, so I guess we find ourselves thinking about the future a lot more than we used to. Not just our future and that of our children, but also the future of Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, an important group we’ve believed in and supported for so many years. We want to be sure that it will still be doing its job long after we’re gone. So, a few years ago, we decided it was time to start making definite plans to help ensure our favorite charity’s future as well as that of our family.
We started gathering information right here, at this website. Then, we talked to our financial advisor and to the staff at Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. We spent a rainy Sunday afternoon at home with a calculator, a legal pad, and a pile of mutual fund statements.
After looking over the different gift plans available to us, we decided that a Charitable Gift Annuity was right for us. We were reassured that it would pay us income for the rest of our lives – in a fixed amount that we could depend on, and at a higher yield than our CDs or mutual funds were providing us. We liked the income tax deduction we could claim for setting up our Gift Annuity, and also the fact that part of our annuity income would come to us tax-free.
Best of all, our Gift Annuity has allowed us to make a larger gift to Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur than we would ever have been able to make in an outright gift or through our estate. We’re very satisfied with our decision!
My husband Al had bought a lot of life insurance when our family was young. He wanted to be sure that our children and I would be taken care of should anything unexpected happen to him.
Well, he’s still around, thank goodness. Our children are grown and settled, and Al and I did little better financially than we ever thought would be possible when we were starting out. Truth is, our family no longer needed all the life insurance coverage we were carrying.
I suggested we talk about it with our accountant and she said that we could donate some policies to our favorite charity! Because of our gratitude to the Sisters for our childrens’ education (both elementary and high school), we decided to donate these policies to the Sisters of Notre Dame. That excess insurance was really an asset that was no longer productive for either one of us. We would receive an income tax deduction approximately equal to the cash surrender value of the policies, which would come in very handy at tax time.
The Sisters could either cash in the policies and use the funds for current projects, or hold them for the death benefits they will pay when we die.
It was a win-win result: my husband and I were able to help the Sisters of Notre Dame out significantly, but we did it by using assets we had almost forgotten about, and in a way that didn’t affect our cash-flow or both of our security.
We wanted to make a gift to Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur in addition to our annual support – a commitment that would make a lasting impact on the organization our whole family loves.
But how to do it? We can’t afford to give away large sums while we’re alive, and our children are counting on receiving most of our estate. Our financial advisor came up with the creative solution. He had been looking over the annual statements from Tom’s and my IRAs and retirement plans.
“There will be more than adequate distributions available from these plans after you retire to maintain your lifestyle and enjoy yourselves a little bit,” he told us. “In fact, I’ll probably be advising you to minimize your withdrawals and keep the accounts growing.
“But, did you know that any balance remaining in those plans when the second of you dies could be taxed twice if you leave the accounts to your children through your will? That’s right – the balances could be subject to both estate and income tax. Your children could wind up with a lot less than you’re expecting them to get.”
His plan? Designate Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur as the recipient of all or a portion of the remaining balance in our retirement plans. That transfer will be subject to neither estate nor income tax, resulting in a substantial gift to Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. We were then able to allocate the other assets in our estate to our children, knowing that they can take them free of the double tax that applies to retirement accounts.
The result for us? We solved an estate-planning problem we didn’t even know we had, and found a way to provide long-term support for our favorite institution.
After my wife Karen died, I began to appreciate much more the organizations to which she had been so devoted. Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur was always her favorite, and I began to look for ways that my giving could keep her commitment alive.
I decided to make a bequest to Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. Trouble was, I had just re-written my will, and I didn’t want to go the time and expense of having a new document drawn just to add a bequest to Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.
My lawyer told me that I could set up the gift through a codicil to my existing will. She told me that a codicil is a simple document that makes specific changes to a will – like adding a charitable bequest – but leaves everything else alone. It’s a great solution for making minor adjustments to an estate plan you’re otherwise happy with.
She had the codicil ready for me to sign in two days – and now I can rest easy knowing that the organization that meant so much to Karen will be hearing from her once again.