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When to Choose Giving Through your Individual Retirement Account (IRA )

When to Choose Giving Through your Individual Retirement Account (IRA )

Your needs and desires

You are required to make a minimum distribution from your IRA but also want to make a meaningful offering to Lake Avenue Church. Alternately, you can leave any residual in your IRA to Lake Avenue Church by naming Lake Avenue Church as the beneficiary, thus avoiding any tax on this asset.

Why Giving through your IRA may be a wise choice

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, passed by Congress in 2016, allows the owner of an IRA to have his or her minimum distribution directed to Lake Avenue Church as a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD). Any individual who is 70½ years of age or older can transfer up to $100,000 annually, avoiding taxation entirely on the amount of that gift and reducing his or her taxable income. Additionally, when making a gift through an IRA distribution:

  • Your QCD offsets any minimum distribution requirement.
  • The value of the distribution that is contributed to Lake Avenue Church is not considered part of your adjusted gross income and therefore is not taxable.
  • The donation comes to Lake Avenue Church tax-free, so 100% of the gift is available for the work of our Church.
  • Optionally, you can also designate Lake Avenue Church as the beneficiary of any remainder in the IRA, or a portion thereof, at the end of your life. This removes it from your estate so it is not taxable.  
  • You will be assured that your life -- your witness -- will be a living legacy through the work of Lake Avenue Church.

How to give a gift through an IRA

To discuss this option further, please feel free to set up a confidential conversation with us at no obligation. We welcome an opportunity to explain the benefits of this gift to you and to the ongoing work of Lake Avenue Church. When you elect to make a donation out of your IRA balance, please indicate if it is for the greatest need, a designated program or towards our endowment fund. If you elect to bequeath the balance or a portion to the Church upon your death, we will use it for the greatest need unless you provide instructions to direct the gift otherwise.  As the IRA contains only deferred taxable income, it does not qualify for a tax deduction when filing income taxes, but as a Qualified Charitable Contribution, it will not impact your taxable income.

What steps to take to make this gift

You can make a Qualified Charitable Contribution in one of two ways – by writing a check, payable to Lake Avenue Church, out of your IRA account, or having your IRA administrator transfer the amount you designate to Lake Avenue Church on your behalf.  Remember, it must come directly from the IRA account to the Church to avoid taxation.  Please instruct your IRA administrator that Lake Avenue Church is a qualified charitable organization located at 393 North Lake Avenue, Pasadena, CA, 91101, and our Federal Tax ID is #95-1660848. 

You may choose to leave any remaining balance in your IRA to Lake Avenue Church simply by naming Lake Avenue Church as the beneficiary. This residual will then immediately pass tax-free to Lake Avenue Church without being subject to probate.

Thank you!

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