McLean Asset Management Corporation, working in concert with the American Endowment Foundation, provides a Donor Advised-Fund (DAF) to facilitate client’s charitable contributions for a variety of purposes. Donor Advised Funds provide a meaningful way to help you support important causes and charities. As such, this fund can be utilized to provide immediate medical, food, clothing, housing and other relief for victims of the devastating earthquake in Nepal this past weekend. We thought the best way to summarize the reasons for utilizing the fund, was to prepare a question and answer format.
1. Why should I contribute to this fund, as opposed to gifting cash?
This fund is primarily, although not exclusively, geared toward those who wish to make gifts of securities or investments from their portfolios.
2. Why can’t I do that myself?
McLean primarily utilizes an institutional class asset manager whose fund shares cannot be universally sold through the mainstream brokerage firms most international charities are likely to use. To chase each one down and obtain selling agreements with each firm is far more time- consuming than setting up a Donor Advised-Fund. That is, of course, assuming that you have appreciated securities to gift. Considering market increases of the past few years, many of you may have appreciated securities available for gifting. Virtually our only choice for gifting these shares is a DAF.
3. How will this fund put the donated funds to work directly on the ground, in the areas I wish to provide help in?
We know that many relief charities may not direct funds on the ground to the affected area, and you cannot direct such contributions of given to charities such as the American Red Cross. However, at the time of the 2011 Japan Tsunami, one could direct contributions through the International Red Cross to Tsunami Relief. The fund will select charities that can assure these funds will be put to work where they are needed, and have a track record of putting high percentages of donated funds to work. For Nepal, organizations that are putting relief directly on the ground are Mercy Corps www.mercycorps.org, Americares www.americares.org, and the International Committee of the Red Cross www.icrs.org.
4. What will the fund do to assure compliance with its directive?
We will work with the American Endowment Foundation to complete research into organizations to assure that client funds are directed to the relief that is intended. We can specify a clear directive for the use of these donated funds.
5. Why can’t I make my own contribution to charities you select?
You may, and we will continue to offer a list of selected charities providing relief. There is a clout achieved through bundling of larger contributions.
6. Again, why should we make our contributions through this fund?
You are under no obligation to do so, however we can take the workload off our clients by completing this research for you, rather than have hundreds of clients do this on their own. We can also research the best tax advantage for clients in making those gifts.
7. Why are you using a pass through organization like the American Endowment Foundation?
American Endowment Foundation is the largest independent donor advised fund sponsor in the country and provides an effective vehicle to do this. They make the process seamless. And for many clients in a standard tax bracket for capital gain taxes, this increases the purchasing power of your gift by your tax savings. The American Endowment Foundation will charge a fee of 1% for handling the administration of the gift, which we think is well worth it given the benefit.
8. Does McLean profit from this service, or charge in any manner?
We do not charge for providing this service. We also act to help in the process by determining tax advantages, and the best way possible for clients to complete desired gifts. In fact, we are displacing cash gifts by clients to securities gifts that come from client portfolios here, thereby reducing assets, and therefore our fee income.
8. How will McLean get this done, and get the funds in the hands of those who need it?
McLean will assist with all the necessary paperwork to transfer the securities and get them converted to cash. There is minimal time and participation of either you as the client, Foundation personnel, or the charities involved. That efficiency reduces the time it takes for cash to be put to work.
9. Is it too late to make a gift to make a difference?
Many governments and relief organizations immediately stepped in to provide aid. To the extent resources were depleted, gifts can help to cover the next event requiring assistance.
Disclosure: Clients are under no obligation to contribute to the donor advised fund managed by McLean Asset Management Corporation, and the foregoing is provided for information purposes only.
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