Monday, September 12, 2016

Planning for Your Family

By: Laurie Valentine

Planning for how to provide for your family at your death should be a key objective of estate planning and it is good stewardship. The costs of probating and distributing your estate and the amount of death taxes due may be greater if you have not planned well, which means less to pass to your beneficiaries.

For those with children under age 18, thought needs to be given to whom you want appointed as guardian for your children if both parents died before all are 18 or older. The court-appointed guardian will make all the decisions you as a parent would be making for your children until each reaches age 18. You can include a provision in your Will designating who you want appointed as guardian.

A decision also needs to be made as to whether the share you want to leave to a family member will be given to them outright or whether their share should be managed by someone else, either until they get to an older age or perhaps for the rest of their life if they are incapacitated or just not good money managers.

Including a trust provision in your Will allows you to empower another person to manage the share of a family member beneficiary. Usually the trustee is permitted to use the trust income for the beneficiary and may also be authorized to use trust principal for the beneficiary’s health, education and other needs.

Heed Paul’s admonition in 1 Timothy 5:8 and “….provide for [your] relatives, and especially for the members of [your] household…” 

Laurie Valentine is COO and Trust Counsel for the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, PO Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; (502) 489-3533 or 1-866-489-3533 (Toll-free, Kentucky Only); KYBaptistFoundation.org

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Educate and Encourage

By: Richard Carnes 

As the development agency for Kentucky Baptist churches, the Kentucky Baptist Foundation (KBF) helps educate a church’s staff and lay leadership on effective ways to implement intentional legacy planning programs for church members. It is imperative that churches educate and encourage their members to see their financial stewardship more broadly than just the donation they place into the offering plate. This stewardship training extends to planning the utilization of all the financial resources entrusted to church members for the benefit of their family, their church, and Kingdom causes.

Church leaders can make great strides in impacting the financial well-being of church member’s families and the well-being of the church’s ministries by scheduling teaching opportunities for their church members on how to become “Kingdom -minded” stewards. The great news for church leaders is they are not alone in providing this type of Christian estate stewardship training for their members. The KBF helps facilitate this training of church members to become more “Kingdom-minded” by conducting educational seminars on financial and estate planning topics at your church. This educational resource is provided by the KBF at no cost to Kentucky Baptist churches.

Some examples of frequently requested seminars are:

Estate Planning Mistakes and Solutions - Discover what the ten biggest estate planning mistakes are and how to avoid them to assure you manage your finances wisely.

Who Will Be In Charge If …? – Explores incapacity planning tools – powers of attorney, health care advanced directives, Living Trusts and what happens if no prior planning has been done.

Ways To Make Gifts To Your Church – Estate stewardship giving ideas to encourage church members to take stewardship to a deeper level – what to give, how to give, and why we as Christians should give.

As your church begins to plan its Fall series of education and training for Wednesday evenings, Sunday evenings or the Sunday morning Sunday School hour, please consider inviting KBF staff to conduct a seminar session at your church. To learn more, please contact the KBF’s trust counsel, Laurie Valentine, or me at our toll-free number (866) 489-3533 for the KBF’s full list of legacy planning seminar topics and to schedule a seminar date.

Richard Carnes is president of the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, PO Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; toll-free (866) 489-3533; KYBaptistFoundation.org




Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Ways to Give to Baptist Causes

By: Laurie Valentine

Your church, association and the Kentucky Baptist Convention and its agencies and institutions provide a wide variety of important ministries that need financial support. The ways you can support these important causes through legacy giving (giving out of your assets, rather than your income) are also wide-ranging.

An outright gift of cash, appreciated securities or real estate is probably the most common, and simplest, way to make gifts during your lifetime.

Other methods of lifetime giving, such as charitable gift annuities and charitable remainder trusts, allow you to set up a future gift to one or more Baptist causes while retaining an annual income for your lifetime or a term of years.

There are also a variety of gifts you can arrange now to benefit the causes of your choice at your death. The most common is a bequest in your Will or Living Trust. Another possibility is to name a Baptist cause as the beneficiary of some portion of your retirement account, IRA or a life insurance policy.

You can designate your gift be used for a specific program or ministry or you can allow the organization to choose how to use your gift. You may also want to limit the organization to using only the earnings off what you give (this type of arrangement is called an “endowment fund”).

Gifts may be made directly to the benefiting organization or may be given to a third party, such as the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, to manage for the designated beneficiary cause or causes.

Laurie Valentine is COO and Trust Counsel for the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, PO Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; (502) 489-3533 or 1-866-489-3533 (Toll-free, Kentucky Only); KYBaptistFoundation.org

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.







Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Growth In Giving 2015

By: Richard Carnes

The annual report on charitable giving in the United States for the year 2015 was recently published by Giving USA Foundation. The Giving USA report announced that 2015 was America’s most-generous year ever with a total of $373.25 billion contributed to charitable causes, which was a 4.1% increase over the prior year. Religious organizations continue to remain the number one recipient of charitable contributions in the USA at 32% or $119.3 billion, followed by donations to Education at 15% or $57.5 billion and Human Services at 12% or $45.2 billion as other large recipients.

There has been a general slowing of giving to religious causes in recent years, but contributions held steady at 32% from 2014 to 2015. The encouraging news is that almost 74% of religious organizations responding to the Nonprofit Research Collaborative Winter 2016 survey reported increases in 2015 contributions.

We are pleased to report that the Kentucky Baptist Foundation for its fiscal year 2015 distributed in excess of $6.0 million toward Kingdom advancement through the various church, missionary, educational, evangelistic and compassion ministry causes of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, the Southern Baptist Convention and other Christian organizations. The distributions from the Foundation during 2015 increased 10.7% from the prior year.

These distributions were made possible by the many faithful and generous Christian stewards who practiced estate stewardship and generous giving at a deeper level. Their gifts through bequests, charitable trusts and other types of legacy giving have created perpetual endowment funds that will provide growing distributions to Baptist causes until Jesus comes again.

If you have questions about Christian estate planning strategies or want to request a private estate stewardship consultation, please contact the Foundation’s trust counsel, Laurie Valentine, or me at our toll-free number (866) 489-3533.

Richard Carnes is the president of the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, P O Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; toll-free (866) 489-3533; www.KYBaptistFoundation.org.

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Give Your House and Live In It Too

By: Laurie Valentine

Joe and Linda decided they wanted to do something significant for their church and they hoped they could use their house to accomplish their giving objectives. They considered making a current gift of their house, but decided against that because they hope to live in it for many more years.

The logical solution seemed to be to add a gift of the house to their church in their wills to take effect after both of them are deceased.

Then Joe and Linda heard about a way to make a gift to their church now, get a sizable current income tax deduction and still be able to live in their home for the rest of their lives. This solution---a retained life estate gift----sounded like the right plan for them.

To make a retained life estate gift homeowners deed their personal residence or farm to a charity through an irrevocable retained life estate agreement. The deed includes a provision reserving to the owners the right to use the property for the rest of their lives. At the death of the last life tenant, the charity becomes the full outright owner of the property.

The value of a retained life estate gift for income tax deduction purposes is the current market value of Joe and Linda’s house reduced by the value of their lifetime right to use the house.

Joe and Linda, as the life tenants, will be expected to maintain property insurance, pay the property taxes and pay for typical maintenance and repair items.

Laurie Valentine is COO and Trust Counsel for the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, PO Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; (502) 489-3533 or 1-866-489-3533 (Toll-free, Kentucky Only); KYBaptistFoundation.org

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.


Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Gift of A Lifetime

By: Richard Carnes

Each year the Kentucky Baptist Foundation is fortunate to receive estate gifts that were planned in earlier years by thoughtful, forward-looking donors. These donors, through provisions in their wills and other long-term plans, made gifts that might otherwise not have been possible.

Other individuals would like to support the ministries of their church and Baptist causes but think they don’t have anything to give or believe such a gift would compromise their family member’s future security. This is a common feeling but there is encouraging news on ways you can make a gift from assets you accumulated during a lifetime.

Giving through your will can be a convenient way to support the Christian ministries important to you. After first providing for your loved ones, you may decide to make a charitable gift of a specific amount, a percentage of your estate, or all or part of what remains after family and/or friends have been remembered.

While a will is usually the first method that comes to mind when considering a legacy gift, there are other ways to accomplish a donor’s charitable goals. These plans are generally easy to put in place and can be adjusted if your circumstances change. Some of these strategies may include gifting through trusts, gifts of life insurance, gifts of real estate assets or gifts of retirement plan remainders.

Giving through a trust is an often used strategy. Many individuals make use of trusts created during life to provide for management and future distribution of assets, then, at the termination of the trust, direct that a portion of the remaining assets be used for charitable purposes.

The Kentucky Baptist Foundation staff is honored to assist numerous Kentucky Baptists that have sought God’s direction on how they should consider planning their financial matters in order to provide for their families, their church and other Baptist ministry causes.

If you have questions about these giving strategies or want to request a private estate stewardship consultation, please contact the Foundation’s trust counsel, Laurie Valentine or me at our toll-free number (866) 489-3533.

Richard Carnes is the president of the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, PO Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; toll-free (866) 489-3533; KYBaptistFoundation.org.

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Celebrating Students

By: Richard Carnes

Graduation ceremonies are occurring across the Commonwealth of Kentucky at this time. It is always an exciting time for students and their families as they celebrate the achievement of an educational milestone and look forward to the next phase of the student’s life. For many students, college or technical school awaits them, but some budding young scholars must defer the hope of achieving their academic dream due to a lack of sufficient financial resources.

The Kentucky Baptist Foundation has been honored to work with numerous donors whose passion is helping students secure the necessary financial support to achieve their educational goals. One example of this collaboration is the scholarship funds that donors have established at the Foundation to help off-set the costs of student’s education. The Kentucky Baptist Foundation’s scholarship committee met recently to review student applications and grant scholarship awards for the upcoming academic year. The scholarship committee was privileged to award 74 scholarships to college and seminary students totaling $93,385 from the 17 scholarship endowments administered by the Foundation.

You may share this same passion for education and would like to explore how you can implement a legacy gift plan to fund a scholarship endowment like the ones referenced above. Or you may have a Christian school, college or Baptist seminary that you would like to support through a legacy gift. Also, churches can create scholarship funds through the Foundation that will provide much needed financial assistance to their college bound students.

The Kentucky Baptist Foundation staff is available to assist you by providing guidance in creating these scholarship funds and charitable endowments to support worthy Christian education causes across the state and the nation. To learn more, you may contact the Foundation’s trust counsel, Laurie Valentine, or me at our toll-free number (866) 489-3533.

Richard Carnes is the president of the Kentucky Baptist Foundation, PO Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253; toll-free (866) 489-3533; KYBaptistFoundation.org

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.