The IRA Qualified Charitable Distribution

An opportunity to see your charitable legacy come to life

Valley of the Sun United Way invites our donors to consider new and strategic ways of giving, partnering with us as we work to end the cycle of poverty in our communities. The IRA Qualified Charitable Distribution may offer donors a unique opportunity to support our work, while receiving favorable tax treatment for their gift.

The information provided below is general in nature and should not be relied on as tax, legal, or financial planning advice. For specific advice, please consult your professional advisors.

In December 2015, Congress passed a law allowing donors to give up to $100,000 to charity directly from certain types of Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) without counting the distribution as taxable income. This Qualified Charitable Distribution or “QCD” is a distribution from an IRA that is paid by a direct transfer of funds from an IRA custodian to a qualified charity like Valley of the Sun United Way, excluding it from taxable income.

QCD’s may be counted toward satisfying a donor’s Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) for the year, as long as certain requirements are met. While many types of IRAs are eligible for QCDs, there are strict requirements.

Can I make a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD)?

  • You must be 70½ or older to be eligible to make a QCD.
  • QCDs are limited to the amount that would otherwise be taxed as ordinary income. This excludes non-deductible contributions.
  • The funds must be directly transferred from your IRA custodian, payable to a qualified charity.
  • The maximum annual amount that can qualify for a QCD is $100,000. This applies to the sum of QCDs made to one or more charities in a calendar year.
  • For a QCD to count towards your current year's Required Minimum Distribution, the funds must come out of your IRA by your RMD deadline, generally December 31.

A Qualified Charitable Distribution can be a powerful philanthropic tool, enabling you to see your charitable legacy come to life. Our Major Gifts Team would be happy to meet with you and your professional advisors to discuss your specific situation, and whether a QCD may be right for you. As always, thank you for supporting Valley of the Sun United Way. For more information about the many ways you can support Valley of the Sun United Way through Major or Planned Giving, please contact Lisa Groves, JD, at lgroves@vsuw.org or (602) 631-4806.


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