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Compare Charitable Income Options

  Pooled Income Fund Charitable Remainder Trusts Charitable Gift Annuities
Vehicle Definition
  • Charitable Trust established and maintained by a qualified nonprofit organization
  • Provides lifetime income stream to you or your chosen beneficiaries
  • After the death of the last income beneficiary, the remaining account value is distributed to the charitable beneficiaries you designate
  • Irrevocable Trust established and administered by your legal representative and designated trustee(s)
  • Provides lifetime income stream to you or your chosen beneficiaries
  • After the death of the last income beneficiary, the remaining account value is distributed to the charitable beneficiaries you designate
  • An annuity contract between a donor and a nonprofit organization
  • The charity guarantees lifetime income payments to designated beneficiaries
  • After the death of the last income beneficiary, the remaining contract value is distributed to the charity
Minimum Contribution Typically $10K–$20K Typically $200K or more Typically $5K–$10K
Income Beneficiaries Limited to 2 Unlimited Limited to 2
Assets Accepted
  • Generally at the charity’s discretion; most types of securities and property can be donated, including real estate, art, and collectibles
  • Cannot accept tax-exempt securities or mutual funds that hold tax-exempt securities
Most types of securities and property, including real estate, art, and collectibles, provided the donated asset can produce income Ultimately at the charity’s discretion; most types of securities and property can be donated, including real estate, art, and collectibles
Investment Management Specific to program chosen; the sponsoring charity controls Flexible; Trustee or delegate controls, depending on trust setup Charity controls how the contributed assets are invested
Tax Treatment
On Donated Assets
Partial income tax deduction based on beneficiary life expectancy and a Pooled Income Fund’s historic rate of return Partial income tax deduction based on IRS-designated rate tables (based on life expectancy) and payout structure Partial income tax deduction based on a Charitable Gift Annuity yield set by charity and beneficiary life expectancy
On Capital Gains Eliminated Eliminated or deferred Eliminated or deferred
On Income Payments Received Taxed as ordinary income Tiered tax treatment Tiered tax treatment
Charitable Beneficiaries
Number of Beneficiaries
Flexible if sponsor has a donor-advised fund (DAF) program — otherwise only one* Unlimited One
Option to Change? Only if sponsor has a donor-advised fund program* Yes, if in trust documents No — must be sponsor charity
Setup and Administration Generally no setup cost to donor; charity administers and may deduct administration fees from a Pooled Income Fund assets Required legal setup; annual maintenance costs and tax filing fees; costs may be paid by trust Generally no setup cost to donor; charity administers; may not deduct fee from income to donor
Key Advantages
  • Easy to establish and maintain
  • Eliminates all capital gains
  • Potential income payout increase
  • Overall flexibility (if established correctly)
  • Easy to establish
  • Guaranteed income payout
Key Disadvantage Fewer asset types accepted; income-yield risk Complex and expensive Inflation risk; locked-in charitable recipient; private contract with charitable recipient
Future Family Involvement Yes, if a Pooled Income Fund is sponsored by a charity with donor-advised fund program Yes, if a Charitable Remainder Trust names a charity with a donor-advised fund program as one of the remainder beneficiary charities No

* If the sponsor charity offers a donor-advised fund program, as Fidelity Charitable does, additional successor flexibility may be available, including multiple charitable beneficiaries — otherwise only one charitable beneficiary may be named.