Ask the Expert: Yvonne Hall

Ask the Expert: Yvonne Hall

Yvonne Hall
Yvonne Linker Hall (80C)

Ask the Expert

If you've invested in stocks - even a little - you've probably had to face an unhappy reality: you usually must pay taxes on all stock profits. Fortunately, there's a way to turn that bad news into great news for both you and a charitable organization you care about, like Berry College. By gifting your appreciated stock to a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, you will provide critical support and receive a tax deduction for the fair market value of the donated shares.

In today's issue of Ask the Expert, Yvonne Linker Hall (80C), a certified financial planner, certified investment management analyst, and managing partner and co-founder of Hall & Dornan Capital Partners Wealth Managers, will share some helpful tips about gifting stocks. Yvonne has been a professional financial advisor since 1993, providing her clients with investment advice for wealth management and preservation. She holds a bachelor of science degree in business administration from Berry College. Yvonne and her team enjoy supporting organizations focused on creating a better world for women, girls, and their families. She is a member of Berry's Planned Giving Council.

Is donating stock a good option for making a charitable gift?

Yes, gifting appreciated stock can offer significant benefits for both the donor and the receiving organization. As the donor, you would not have to pay capital gains tax on the increased value of the stock. You could—if you itemize-- also be eligible for a charitable tax deduction equal to the fair market value of the stock which would reduce your taxable income and result in a tax savings. Also, when you give stock, you may be able to make a larger contribution to your favorite cause, furthering their mission and programs even more than if you had given a cash gift.

I'm not wealthy, can I still donate stocks?

You don't have to be wealthy to make a charitable impact. If you have charitable intent, you need to consider a few questions before making a gift: How does my intent fit with my overall financial plan? How much can I afford to give? What is the most effective way to fulfill my philanthropic desire in the context of my overall financial plan? What makes the most sense to give? What's the most advantageous way to make the gift?

If you have the resources to draw on to donate appreciate stock, you need to consider whether doing so enhances your overall financial plan, estate plan, and cash flow needs in retirement.

Wouldn't it be better to sell the stock and donate the proceeds to charity?

No. If you sell your stock, you will be liable for the tax on any gains. If you give the stock to a nonprofit, they will get the full value of the asset, and you won't have to pay taxes on it. The larger the unrealized gain is, the more significant the benefit from donating the stock.

Are there any guidelines regarding how long to keep stock before donating it?

You can give stock that you've held for any period of time, but it is typically more beneficial to wait until you've held the stock for a year or longer—both to give it time to grow and to maximize any deduction available from the donation.

Is there a limit to how much stock you can donate?

Yes. Simply speaking, you can give up to 30% of your adjusted gross income, but if you are considering that level of donation, you should consult with a tax professional.

What information does the donor need to have available to make the transaction go smoothly?

If you're planning to give a gift to Berry, Helen Lansing, senior planned giving officer, will be your best resource for this information, but in general you need the receiving organization's account and transfer instructions as well as the specific stock, number of shares, and which lots of stock you intend to donate. You will also need to get a Donation Acknowledgement Letter from the charity to use for your taxes.

Is there ever a time when gifting stock doesn't make sense?

Yes, if you have a loss, there's no benefit to donating the stock or if you will need the resources provided by that stock asset for your own financial support. Otherwise, barring these two things, using appreciated stock to make a charitable gift may make a lot of sense.

How can I donate stock?

Contact Helen Lansing at 706-378-2867 or and she will walk you through it. The actual giving is a simple process, but it's important to work with your financial advisor to work out the details so that you have the most positive overall impact possible.

Investment advisory services offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc.

Hall & Dornan Capital Partners is not a registered broker/dealer and is independent of Raymond James Financial Services.

Raymond James and its advisors do not offer tax advice. You should discuss any tax matters with the appropriate professional.


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