Charitable Gifting Vehicles

Charitable gifting vehicles fall into two categories: income-producing and direct.


Charitable Gift Annuity (CGA) A contract between a donor and a nonprofit.  In exchange for a donation to the charity, the charity guarantees a specified life income payment to beneficiaries.  The charity receives the remainder upon the death of the beneficiaries.

Charitable Lead Trust (CLT) An irrevocable trust that generates a potential income stream for the charitable organization(s) of donor choice, with the remainder going to family members or other beneficiaries.

Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) An irrevocable trust that generates a potential income stream for the donor and beneficiaries, with the remainder going to one or more selected charitable organizations.

Pooled Income Fund (PIF) A charitable trust established and maintained by a qualified nonprofit organization, providing the donor or beneficiaries with a potential, lifetime income stream based on a prorated share of the income earned by the trust. Remaining assets are eventually distributed to the designated charitable beneficiaries.


Donor-Advised Fund (DAF) A public charity that allows the donor to make an irrevocable contribution to the charity and then recommend grants from the charity to be made to qualified nonprofit organizations.  Donors recommend grants on their own timetable to eligible charities.  Donors can also grant anonymously.

Private Foundation (PF) A nonprofit organization established by a donor, typically through a substantial initial gift, which can make grants to charities over time.  Must distribute 5% of assets annually.  Donor has full control over distributions to charities and can grant to public or private charities.