A painting, sculpture, or other piece of fine art can make an ideal gift. Whether purchased or inherited, selected works of art in your personal collection that you have enjoyed may now provide more enjoyment and fuller use if given to the Church or one of its institutions. Gifts of art can be widely used for educational and display purposes. Occasionally, pieces of art may be sold and the proceeds made available to meet high-priority needs.
The typical donor:
- Has enjoyed using the art.
- Does not desire to pass the art to heirs.
- Wants others to enjoy the art.
- Desires to make a meaningful gift.
- Recognizes a "related use" by the recipient institution.
Gift features and benefits:
- Immediate income tax deduction
- Avoidance of capital gains taxes
- Deduction based on fair market value
- Gift can be timed to take advantage of changes in market value
How Do I Make a Gift of Art?
A gift of art to the Church or one of its institutions must be reviewed and accepted by Philanthropies in behalf of the receiving entity. Acceptance of an art gift is based on a number of factors:
- Condition of the art
- Availability of appropriate display space
- Harmony with existing art collections
- Potential educational value
- Confirmed "related use" of the art by the institution (or charitable income tax deduction may be limited
- Approval by the institution's art acceptance councils
Philanthropies will be pleased to assist you in reviewing your particular piece of art and determining if it is an appropriate gift to the Church or one of its institutions. If you do make a gift of art, details regarding delivery and insurance of your art gift can be discussed with an Philanthropies professional.
For tax purposes, you must obtain your own appraisal to determine the fair market value you claim on your income tax return. Your tax return must include IRS form 8283 signed by your appraiser.
How Do I Make a Gift of Art Using Gift Planning Tools?
Art and art collections can make an ideal gift at death by Will or Revocable Trust. A gift of art made through your will or trust allows you and your family members to enjoy the art during your lifetime. Then, at your death, the art is transferred to the Church or one of its institutions. In isolated situations, art can also be used to fund a life-income gift such as a Charitable Remainder Unitrust.
Other Facts You Should Know about a Gift of Art
Art may pose special problems for the artist in his or her estate. Gifts of art by the artist to the Church or one of its institutions are deductible for income tax purposes only to the extent of the cost of materials used to produce the art. If art is gifted by the artist to heirs during life or from the artist's estate at death, it is valued for gift and estate tax purposes at fair market value. This can result in the art being sold to pay taxes, often at less than fair market value, leaving heirs with little or no proceeds. Philanthropies professionals would be happy to discuss your particular circumstance with you and your professional advisors.