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Advancement: Your Connection to Union

What Is the Greatest Gift You Can Give Your Loved Ones?

Ellen Hardt

Ellen Hardt with her daughter-in-law and son, Angie and Stan Hardt

One of the greatest gifts you can give your family this season is a well-organized estate.

Ellen Hardt gave peace of mind to her family by planning her estate. This benefited her son and daughter-in-law, Stan and Angie Hardt, when they needed it most—while mourning her loss.

Ellen had created a trust that allowed Stan and Angie to grieve without the stress a disorganized estate can bring. Difficulties like digging through paperwork to find where assets are, looking for titles and deeds, and deciding what the deceased's wishes were.

Where Do You Start?
The problem most people have in organizing their estates is knowing where to start. Our estate planning checklist can help!

Use our checklist to help organize your estate because the time you spend on this important task is not spent for yourself, it is a priceless gift to those you leave behind.

Using Your Estate Plan to Help Others
Ellen made sure her family was taken care of in her estate plan, but she also returned to God what He had given her. Along with remembering her church, Ellen gave a portion of her estate to fund a scholarship at Union College, which has helped 12 students obtain a Christian education and will continue to help students for many years to come.

Every situation is different so please discuss your wishes with your family and legal, financial and tax advisors.

Are you interested in making a gift to Union College, but aren't sure which donation option is right for you? Answer a few quick questions to find the gift that matches your goals. If you have already included Union College in your estate plans, then please let us know so we can make sure your wishes are carried out.

Of course, you can always call me at 402-486-2503 or email me at sccoppoc@ucollege.edu if you have any questions. I am here to help you.

Scot T. Coppock
Director of Leadership Giving

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Union College a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to Union College, a certified 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation registered in the State of Nebraska, [written amount or percentage of the etate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Union College or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Union College as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Union College as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Union College where you agree to make a gift to Union College and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

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