Jewish Community Foundation

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Here are some tips to consider from five professional advisors who have recently completed the 2017 Trusted Charitable Advisor Program at the Jewish Community Foundation.

Open a Donor Advised Fund (DAF). Donate highly-appreciated investments (stocks, bonds, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds) to it. This may enable a larger gift (and a larger tax deduction) than simply writing a check, since the donor would avoid paying the capital gains taxes from selling appreciated investments and then contributing the after-tax proceeds. When you establish a DAF, you can take an immediate tax deduction and then take your time
in identifying the charities you want to receive your donations.
- Dean Kernus, CFP®, CPA, AIF®

Are you required to take mandatory distributions from your IRA? Consider using the Qualified Charitable Deduction to lower your taxable income. Retirees over the age of 70 1/2 have the option of donating up to $100,000 of that distribution to charity. By donating your Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) to charity, it will be excluded from your adjusted gross income on your tax return.
- Janet Acheatel, CFP®, CDFA

Beware the new tax proposals, which call for the elimination of deductions for state and local taxes and miscellaneous itemized deductions. Additionally, medical expense deductions might be disallowed and property tax write-offs could be limited to $10,000 per year. So, unless you are subject to Alternative Minimum Tax this year, try to pay and even prepay expenses that might not be deductible next year. Examples include prepaying long-term care insurance premiums and investment management fees by year end as well as paying spring property taxes by December 31st.
- Sheryl Rowling, CPA, PFS

Review your estate plan to think about whether your trustees/fiduciaries are up to the job. If you have named your children in your estate plan and they are visiting for the holidays, it is a good time to schedule a meeting with your children and estate planning attorney to discuss the estate plan.
- Daniel J. Wilson, Attorney

Short of cash? Use your credit card. You can deduct contributions in the year you make them. If you charge your gift to a credit card before the end of the year, it will count for 2017, even if you don’t pay the credit card bill until 2018.
- Jeff Platt, JD, CFA, CFP®

The Jewish Community Foundation offers the Trusted Charitable Advisor (TCA) program to advance charitable planning and to further strengthen our partnership with the San Diego professional advisor community. For more information and to see the full list of Trusted Charitable Advisors, please visit

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