Oklahoma Charitable Donations in Estate Planning

charitable donations in estate planning

Many Oklahoman’s use charitable donations in Estate Planning to accomplish their goals. Often times when a person is creating an estate plan, they consider the idea of gifting money or assets to charity upon their passing.  About 16M Americans leave some kind of bequest in their last will and testament for charities.  If you would like to join this number of Americans giving charitable donations, you have several options under the law.

Estate Planning:  Charitable Donations

Estate law in Oklahoma provides you several ways to leave charitable donations in your will.  However, there are a few main ways that most people choose:

–  Leaving a Lump Sum:  If you want, you may leave a lump sum charitable donation in your will.  This means that you will simply give a set amount of money to a charity to use as they see fit.  You do not place any parameters or earmarks on the money.

–  Charitable Trust:  There are several different types of trusts you can put in your will.  These are generally “testamentary trusts” and are irrevocable.  However, you can set up revocable trusts also.  In the trust, you can make a charity the beneficiary.  Further, the charity must administer the trust and the assets in it in accordance with your wishes.  For example, say you set up a trust in your will for a Community Resource Non-Profit, but you want your monies to only fund the food pantry area and no other programs.  You can do this.


–  Family Foundations:  Another way of leaving charitable donations is by creating a family foundation.  These are usually a tool that extremely wealthy families use.  This will separate the assets from the estate to avoid estate taxes, but still allow the family to control the charitable purposes the money goes to.

Charitable Donations & Your Estate Plan

In order to ensure you leave charitable donations in your estate plan, you must put it in writing.  This can be in your will or in a trust document.  If not already effective, the charitable donations will take effect upon your passing.  However, it is extremely important that you leave these instructions in writing.

Estate Planning Attorneys in Oklahoma City

Setting up an estate plan and charitable donations is a tedious process.  It is highly recommended that you use an attorney to create the proper documents for your estate plan.  Attorneys can ensure that your assets and monies will be designated as you wish and that your will is proper and will avoid probate.  Our OKC estate planning attorneys offer a free consultation to new clients if you have interest in forming an estate plan.