What is Philanthropic Planning? Why Do I Need a Lawyer?

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Philanthropic Planning

Philanthropic Planning – Where to start? Why Do I Need a Lawyer?

Philanthropic planning goes further than an estate plan. It’s a representation of who you are and what you believe in, so take the time to think it through with specific goals to create a lasting legacy. Individuals who have vast wealth often want to do something for their communities, which is usually best accomplished through philanthropic giving to specific charities by way of establishing either a trust fund or a foundation. However, trust funds can be complicated financial instruments with significant legalities associated with the use of assets. Trusts and foundations differ in certain aspects of operation. Goals of a foundation should be set from the very beginning, and it should be structured in a way that meets those particular goals. Taxation is also a concern when funds are also invested with proceeds being applied toward the foundation. In addition, foundations also accept contributions unlike a trust. These processes are not always as fluid as envisioned, and having an experienced attorney like Anthony J. Madonia & Associates Chicago IL estate planning lawyers handling the foundation set up and ongoing oversight is vital.

Philanthropic Planning: Type of Foundation

There are effectively two type of foundations, those being operational and nonoperational. Non-operational foundations typically supply financial resources for on-the ground charitable organizations. Operational foundations actually conduct the physical work associated with the goals. Just as with any business or estate plan, an experienced estate plan law firm in Chicago can provide invaluable advice on how to go about legal compliance and asset protection throughout foundation operation. Legal structure of the different types varies, and having a knowledgeable attorney involved is very important.

Philanthropic Planning: Foundation Structure

The first aspect of setting up a foundation is determining which operational structure is necessary for successful operation. Non-operational foundations merely supply money to charitable organizations, where operational foundations actually perform much of the connected work. Scope of business dictates the structure. Just like with any other business, the management staff will determine how lines of communication and necessary records maintenance will be maintained. Actual physical work conducted by employees or volunteers in terms of legal compliance is important as well depending on foundation dynamics. A foundation is essentially still a business, and there are specific legalities associated with any business, even if it is a 501(c)3 tax exemption operation. An estate plan law firm in Chicago can be invaluable to ensuring all legal compliance.

Anyone considering establishment of a foundation in Illinois should contact the legal professionals at Anthony J. Madonia & Associates Chicago IL estate planning lawyers.