This is from my enrolled Tax agent's newsletter she sends out quarterly. If you need a charity to donate to I know a church plant in Charlotte that is in need! A great incentive to avoid taxes and advance the Kingdom at the same time!
CHARITABLE DISTRIBUTIONS FROM IRA'S - Extended through December 31, 2009
For the past two years an IRA owner, age 70 1/2 or over has been allowed to directly transfer, tax-free, up to $100,000 per year to an eligible charity.
Trustee to Charity Transfer Required:
To qualify, the funds must be contributed directly by the IRA trustee to the charity. Amounts so transferred are not taxable and no deduction is available for the donation to charity.
Transfers Are Part of Required Minimum Distribution:
Transferred amounts are counted in determining whether the owner has met the IRA's required minimum distribution rules (RMD). Since the RMD's have been waived for 2009, you may think there is no point in taking advantage of this tax break.
However, there may be other reasons to withdraw from an IRA account this year:
* You may need the money and still want to keep up with the regular charitable donations. Donating the IRA would free up other funds set aside for charity.
* You may want to lower the taxable portion of your portfolio for your heirs. Since the IRA produces income in respect of a decedent at the death of the account owner, leaving stock and other property, rather than the IRA, may result in less tax to the beneficiary.
* You may want to get rid of IRA's that are not doing well.
Taxpayers who don't itemize deductions get full benefit of the contribution, since the IRA withdrawal will not be included in taxable income. Of course, they still get to take the full standard deduction.
Since the IRA distribution made to a charity is not included in the taxpayer's taxable income, the many phase outs related to adjusted gross income are minimized. For example, the taxpayer be able to avoid:
* A phase-out of itemized deductions,
* A 50% charitable contribution base limitation, or
* An increase in the amount of social security benefits that are taxable.