Protect Wildlife with a Charitable Donation from Your IRA

Elk in spring habitat sunlit forest
Photo: Lance Schelvan
If you don’t need retirement funds from your IRA when 70 1/2 or older, consider a qualified charitable distribution to avoid paying taxes on your required minimum distribution while maximizing your commitment to wildlife habitat conservation.

By Kim Davitt, Vital Ground Development Director

If you are passionate about wildlife conservation and believe in Vital Ground’s work to conserve and connect habitat for grizzly bears and other wildlife, consider a charitable IRA donation to The Vital Ground Foundation as part of your conservation legacy.

This under-publicized tax advantage is called a qualified charitable distribution. Depending on your financial situation, you might be able to take advantage of this tax benefit: According to Vanguard, your annual required IRA minimum distribution over age 70 ½ may be donated to a qualified charity, and the withdrawal is not subject to ordinary federal income taxes.

A common way for donors to make IRA charitable contributions during their lives is a direct transfer of up to $100,000 from an Individual Retirement Account to a charity like Vital Ground.

Assuming you don’t need these funds when in your later years, this is one way to avoid taking a mandatory minimum IRA distribution at age 70 ½ while avoiding taxes on otherwise taxable distributions if drawing from a traditional IRA.  Of course, these benefits will all play out while maximizing your commitment to wildlife habitat conservation.

The bottom line: Grizzly bears and countless other wildlife and plant species benefit while you receive tax benefits.

To be sure a qualified charitable distribution is right for you, consult your tax, legal and/or accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction. To learn more, check out the resources listed below.

The Vital Ground Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit. Our federal tax ID number is 87-0483446.




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