Legacy Giving : The Kalamazoo Civic Theatre

Legacy Giving

Legacy Gifts, also known as Planned Gifts, usually require more advanced planning and counsel than other gifts. Legacy Gifts can be very beneficial to the donor because of the valuable tax benefits and/or income that they can provide. There are many different vehicles of Planned Gifts including Bequests, Securities, Life Insurance, IRA or Retirement Plans, Trusts, Charitable Gift Annuities, and Real Estate and Personal Property.

The Spotlighters Society was created to honor those individuals who have made the decision to include the Civic in their estate plans. Disclosure of the kind or amount is not necessary to be included in this society - only confirmation from you that an estate gift has been planned. This Society is recognized in annual publications.

Common Planned Giving vehicles include:


A bequest is the most common Legacy Gift. With a bequest, the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre is designated in your last will and testament as the recipient of a specific amount or a percentage of your overall estate. A bequest is exempt from federal estate taxes and allows you to make a substantial gift when you no longer need the assets. If you have a special place in your heart for the Civic, considering a Bequest may be for you.


Donating appreciated assets, such as stocks, bonds, or mutual funds, can avoid the capital gains taxes that result from selling these securities outright.

Life Insurance

If you would like to make a large gift for little cost, you may donate a paid-up policy you no longer need or simply name the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre as the full or partial beneficiary on a current life insurance policy.

IRA or Retirement Plan Assets

By naming the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre as a full or partial beneficiary of your IRA or retirement plans, you can avoid saddling your heirs with significant income and estate taxes.

Charitable Remainder Trusts

A Charitable Remainder Trust is a separately administered trust established by a donor. Trust payments are provided to the donor and/or other named beneficiary for life or a term of years. The remaining assets would ultimately be distributed to the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre. Charitable Remainder Trusts offer significant income and estate tax advantages while providing variable or fixed income for life.

Charitable Lead Trusts

In many ways, a Charitable Lead Trust works conversely to a Charitable Remainder Trust. A Charitable Lead Trust pays out income (or the lead interest) to the Civic for a specified term of years or for the lifetime of the donor. When the established term is complete, the trust assets revert to the donor or beneficiaries. With a portion of the trust assets being given to the Civic for a specified term, this trust greatly reduces the estate taxes on the trust when it's passed to heirs.

Charitable Gift Annuities

A Charitable Gift Annuity is gift agreement with the Civic that can provide the donor with steady supplemental income that is partially tax-free. The donor transfers cash or property to the Civic in exchange for the Civic's commitment to pay a fixed amount for the lifetime of one or two beneficiaries. A Charitable Gift Annuity is often a great retirement income supplement.

Retained Life Estate Agreements

A Retained Life Estate Agreement is a charitable instrument by which a personal residence, vacation home, or farm is transferred by deed to the Civic; however, the donor retains usage of the property for the remainder of his or her lifetime. Upon the donor passing, the property is entirely owned by the Civic. This agreement allows you to make a significant gift to the Civic, avoid capital gains taxes, and maintain your current lifestyle.

Real Estate and Personal Property

The Civic welcomes gifts of real estate or personal property in the event that accepting such a gift does not place an undue financial burden on the organization. Some examples of personal property include artwork, jewelry, automobiles, and boats.

Considering a Legacy Gift?

We are available to answer your questions about what kinds of gifts the Civic can accept and how to create a long-lasting gift for the betterment of the Civic. We strongly advise that you seek tax, legal, estate planning and/or investment advice from the appropriate professionals to create a plan that best suits your situation and needs.

For more information on making a Legacy Gift to the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre, please email our Development Director or call 269-343-2280.

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