One of the most challenging times in life is dealing with the loss of a spouse or partner. You must not only deal with the sorrow and grief of your loss, but also attend to many details and decisions that need to be made. The Arthritis Foundation has a resource guide called When the Time Comes (WTTC) to help both prior to and during this difficult time. Continue reading Practical Advice for a Difficult Time
By Lauren J. Wolven
A few years ago, my partner received a scary phone call from her child’s college roommate. Her child had collapsed in the dorm bathroom while getting ready for class and was in the hospital. Terrified, my partner contacted the hospital, and she was shocked to learn they couldn’t release any information because her child was over 18 and legally an adult. The hospital required a medical power of attorney before they could tell her anything. She had to make the thousand-mile trip not knowing how her child was doing. It was one of the worst situations a parent could face.
What if you got a call that your loved one – spouse, parent or adult child – was in the hospital? Would you be prepared? It can be overwhelming to even think about, but guidance and help are available.
Continue reading Power of Attorney: The Importance of Being Prepared
There is always a certain degree of guesswork that goes into year-end tax planning, but this year there is the added uncertainty surrounding what the tax code will look like after Washington completes the overhaul of our tax system. The income tax rates for many individuals and businesses may decrease; the definition of income subject to tax may change considerably as well. Many itemized deductions that we have become so used to, such as the deduction for qualified medical expenses, state and local income taxes and real estate taxes may be eliminated.
However, if the resulting new rules resemble the proposals, there will be a doubling of the standard deduction and the possible elimination of the controversial Alternative Minimum Tax. Below are some tax-planning suggestions, including suggestions related to charitable gifts, which consider both the typical year-end planning techniques as well as planning for a potential overhaul:
You’ve worked hard for decades – and it’s about time to enter the next phase of your life. You’ll have time to catch up on those books you’ve been meaning to read, travel to places you’ve dreamed of visiting and perhaps volunteer for that charity you’ve always admired.
But a pleasurable retirement requires sound financial planning. How can you be sure you’ll continue receiving the lifetime income you need and not have to worry that you’ll have enough?
Most Americans don’t have a will. They will work to build a life and home for themselves and take care of their friends and family along the way. Unfortunately at the end of their lives, without a will, their property is up to state law instead of being distributed to their friends, family, or charity organizations of their choosing. Shouldn’t it be up to you to decide where your property goes?
Early in life while mowing lawns, growing and selling tomatoes and managing a neighborhood McDonald’s restaurant as a junior in high school, Kevin Mandrell always knew he had a natural knack for business. He was surrounded by strong business leaders and felt drawn from an early age to dive into business on his own.
Continue reading Creating a Legacy to Conquer Arthritis
Often you hear the phrase, “Charity begins at home.” The story of this family can be characterized by the phrase, “Charity begins and ends at home.” Wayne was only in his 20s and attending college in Arizona when he was diagnosed with arthritis. “I remember him saying his back hurt so bad that when he had to cough or sneeze, he found a convenient tree or wall to brace up against it,” says his wife Carole, a retired high school English teacher.
Years later, Carole and Wayne were browsing through a copy of Arthritis Today magazine when an advertisement caught their attention. The ad featured an opportunity to receive guaranteed payout rates for life and other financial benefits – while they helped the Foundation find a cure for arthritis.
Continue reading Charitable Gift Annuity: A Win-Win
Have you ever received information from the Arthritis Foundation’s Planned Giving Department and wondered exactly what it means? Have you ever seen a request to remember the Arthritis Foundation in your will or trust or read that 25% of all revenue the Foundation receives is from donor bequests? Have you ever met one of the Foundation’s Planned Giving Directors and wondered if they could help you? If so, you’re not alone.
Continue reading Planned Giving: Do More with Thoughtful Planning
Michael Ortman, Arthritis Foundation board chair, knows all too well how juvenile arthritis (JA) can impact a family for a lifetime.
When his son, Daniel, was 11 years old, he began complaining of pain in his foot and ankle. The Ortmans took Daniel to numerous doctors to determine the cause, and after he was diagnosed with a bone scan, Mike and his wife, Kate, were told that Daniel had JA – and that it was spreading to other joints in his body. His parents watched as Daniel went from an active, tree-climbing, independent child to a boy who needed a wheelchair and assistance performing everyday tasks.
Now 27, Daniel continues to struggle with mobility, and has spent most of the last three years homebound. Although he has experienced some recent victories, he still struggles from the ongoing physical and mental challenges of arthritis.
Help us champion the fight against arthritis with planned giving! In our past posts in the Planned Giving Series, we discussed the type of planned gifts we accept and an overview of planned giving to help you better understand how planned gifts differ from other types of donations to the Arthritis Foundation.
In our last post about how to give (part one), we talked about several types of gift models we accept that have multiple benefits for you and your loved ones, including bequests, beneficiary designation gifts, charitable gift annuities and more. Below, we’ll discuss additional alternate types of planned gifts you can make, which will help make a difference in the lives of those with arthritis for years to come!