Estate Planning Attorneys | Partner with San Diego Foundation – San Diego Foundation


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Access unique charitable estate planning strategies and benefits that other institutions can't provide.
Planned giving is about legacy. How do your clients want to be remembered? What will they pass on beyond their lifetimes?
We partner with estate planning attorneys to build unique charitable giving strategies that align with your clients’ values and passions – and complement their overall estate plan – to provide lasting financial and tax benefits.
As a community foundation, we offer unique estate planning strategies that other institutions can’t provide.
We act as your charitable partner, adding philanthropic expertise to your services as you retain complete control of your client relationships.
“My clients and I work with San Diego Foundation giving advisors to realize estate planning goals, which often include using sophisticated trusts to increase charitable impact and maximize tax deductions.”
Laura L. Nichols
Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law
Buchalter Law Offices
As San Diego’s only regional community foundation, we know San Diego’s issues and our nonprofit community. We can connect your clients with planned giving opportunities that truly reflect their values.
Our Giving Team can help you identify the best planned giving option for your clients and their families. Planned giving vehicles include:
A donor-advised fund (DAF) can be used to give during a lifetime, after a lifetime or both. A DAF succession plan engages family members within the philanthropic goals set by your client. Your client can create a DAF during their lifetime or from their estate later on. DAFs are the most popular philanthropic option at the San Diego Foundation.
Naming a charity in a will or living trust enables your client to support their community as you retain complete control over asset management during their lifetime. It also results in your client earning a full charitable deduction on estate taxes.
This type of gift – called a charitable bequest – can be a specific dollar amount, a percentage or all of your client’s estate, or what remains after other bequests are made. Or, your clients can specify that their heirs will receive lifetime income from their estate, with the remainder going to a nonprofit for charitable purposes.
A charitable gift annuity involves a contract between your client and their favorite charity, whereby your client transfers cash or property to the charity in exchange for a partial tax deduction and a lifetime stream of annual income.
Many of our donors, especially those age 70 and above, are very interested in fixed payments for life from a charitable gift annuity. For a married couple, the payments will last until both have passed away.
A Charitable Remainder Trust is a qualified trust that pays income to beneficiaries. After all income payments have been completed, the remainder is distributed to qualified charities.
If your clients establish the trust, they may select the trust percentage or annuity amount, the person to receive the income from the trust and the charities that will receive the principal of the trust after all income payments are completed. The major benefits of the trust are bypassing capital gains tax, increasing income and receiving a charitable income tax deduction.
Through a charitable lead trust, your client can make significant charitable gifts now while providing for the eventual transfer of substantial assets to individual beneficiaries.
You and your client select assets to fund a lead trust: the charity receives a fixed annual payout from the trust and the remainder goes to your clients’ beneficiaries at the end of the charity’s payout term. These funds may be distributed to charities your client specifies or added to a donor-advised fund, donor-advised fund, field of interest fund or discretionary fund at SDF.
Your client can leave property or money in an endowment so that the charity does not spend the principal. Instead, the nonprofit, often a community foundation like the San Diego Foundation, grants the endowment income per your client’s instructions.
It is helpful to suggest a general purpose for the endowment fund because it will last perpetually, and the original purpose for the gift may not exist in the future.
Gifting a life insurance policy allows your clients to make a significant legacy gift to the nonprofit community with tax benefits that they can enjoy during their lifetimes.
As is the case with many retirees with grown children, your client may not need a life insurance policy as a financial safety net anymore. Through a relatively small annual cost of the premium, your clients can give a gift to their favorite charity that is larger than otherwise would be possible.
A retirement plan can be a tax-efficient and simple way of including your client’s favorite charity in their estate plan.
The tax advantage stems from the fact that most retirement plans are subject to income taxes, and possibly estate taxes, if left to an individual beneficiary. However, a charity that is named as the beneficiary does not pay income or estate taxes on the distribution.
If your client owns a family business, substantial real estate holdings or a large estate, then a custom plan that considers special property goals and requirements can be created.
A custom plan option is also useful if your client has a child with special needs. A child with special needs may be provided for through a “special needs trust,” to provide peace of mind and facilitate care of the child by providing resources and directives.
“The Advisor” monthly e-newsletter provides philanthropy news and trends and financial planning strategies for estate planners and their clients.
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Investing in the future of San Diego with SDF ensures your clients’ gifts will directly support community needs for generations to come.
Since 1975, we have partnered with estate planners and their clients to find ways to create positive impacts in communities across San Diego and beyond.
Interested in learning how planned gifts can meet your clients’ estate planning goals? Contact our charitable giving experts.
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Leslie S. Klein
Leslie S. Klein, CFP®, AEP®
Director, Gift Planning Advisor
(619) 814-1353
Jason Rogers
Jason Rogers, AIF, CWS
Director, Wealth Advisor Relations
(858) 245-1508
2508 Historic Decatur Rd., Ste. 200 | San Diego, CA 92106 | (619) 235-2300 |
Hours of Operation: M-F 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
© 2022 San Diego Foundation. All Rights Reserved. FED. ID: #95-2942582
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On August 9, 2022, we awarded $838,704 in Opening the Outdoors grants to 24 nonprofit organizations that offer equitable access to outdoor spaces in San Diego County.
“San Diego Foundation is proud to once again support its partners committed to increasing community-driven efforts to enhance accessible outdoor space, encourage youth to learn more through hands-on education and create the next generation of environmental stewards in the San Diego region,” said Christiana DeBenedict, SDF Director of Environment Initiatives.
This year’s grantees will help address these inequities and enhance access to the outdoors throughout San Diego County.
See Grantees
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