Gifts That Reduce Your Taxes

Many people don’t realize if you want to make a legacy gift to charity, one of the best ways to give is your retirement fund assets. If these are left to family or friends they will have to pay income taxes on your retirement money. If left to charity no income taxes are incurred.

It only takes three simple steps to make this type of gift.
Here's how to name Denver Zoo as a beneficiary:

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Contact Administrator

Contact or log-in online to your retirement plan administrator, insurance company, bank or financial institution for a change-of-beneficiary form.

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Decide Amount

Decide what percentage (1 to 100) you would like us to receive and name us, along with the percentage you chose, on the beneficiary form. You will probably need to include our tax identification number where they ask for social security number – 84-0502539.

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Return Form

Return the completed form to your plan administrator, insurance company, bank or financial institution.

Real Estate Gifts

Want to make a big gift to Denver Zoo without touching your bank account? Consider giving real estate. Such a generous gift helps us continue our work for years to come. And a gift of real estate also helps you. When you give us property you have held longer than one year, you qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction and eliminates capital gains tax. And you no longer have to deal with that property's maintenance costs, property taxes or insurance.

You also don't have to hassle with selling the real estate on your own. You can deed the property directly to the Zoo or ask your attorney to add a few sentences in your will or trust agreement.

Qualified Charitable Distribution

Consider making an immediate gift from your IRA to Denver Zoo.

Here’s how it works:

  • You must be 70½ or older.
  • The gift must be transferred directly from your IRA administrator to Denver Zoo. Consider using our sample letter.
  • The amount of the gift can be up to $100,000 each year.
  • The gift will not be reportable as taxable income.
  • Your gift can satisfy all or part of your required minimum distribution for the year if you are over age 72.
* Congress has waived the annual Required Minimum Distribution from IRA Accounts in the year 2020 as part of the CARES Act in response to COVID-19. Please consider seeking advice from your financial advisor or tax professional to understand how recent changes to laws governing retirement plans may impact you and your charitable gift.

Gifts of Stock

When you donate appreciated securities or mutual funds you have held more than one year to us to save wildlife, you can reduce or even eliminate federal capital gains taxes on the transfer. You may also be entitled to a federal income tax charitable deduction based on the fair market value of the securities at the time of the transfer.

Securities are most often used to support our work in the form of:

A transfer on death (TOD) account. By placing a TOD designation on your brokerage or investment account, that account will be paid over to one or more persons or charities after your lifetime.

An outright gift. When you donate securities to the zoo, you receive the same income tax savings that you would if you wrote us a check, but with the added benefit of eliminating capital gains taxes on the transfer, which can be as high as 20 percent.

  • Electronic Stock Transfers. If your gift will be transferred electronically by DTC, please have your broker deliver the stock to the following account:
    • Charles Schwab
    • Denver Zoological Foundation, Inc.
    • DTC 0164
    • Account #4008-9984
    • If you or your broker have questions or problems with the transfer, please contact Josie Stewart by email, jstewart@denverzoo.org or phone, 720-337-1463.

The Cares Act and Giving

3 things you need to know about The Cares Act

Hannah Yaritz

Hannah Yaritz is passionate about Denver Zoo’s mission and believes that the Zoo “talks the talk and walks the walk, and truly cares about the animals in their care as well as animal conservation efforts around the world.”

Headshot Josie Stewart

Need assistance? I’m here to help.

Josie Stewart
Gift Planning Manager

This information is not intended as legal, accounting, or other professional advice. For assistance in planning your legacy gift, please consult a lawyer and/or financial advisor for professional advice.