Planned Giving

Planned Giving 2017-05-18T16:41:11+00:00

Leaving a lasting legacy … Planned Giving

A photo of an elderly couple looking at documents and planning their future

What is planned giving?

Gifts given as bequests, charitable annuities or other assets, which are often planned by the donor as part of their estate plan to benefit the charitable organizations of their choosing. Often thought of as the domain of the wealthy the reality is that anyone with any negotiable assets may choose to make a planned gift as their philanthropic legacy. 

The benefits of leaving a legacy to the Lighthouse!

There are many ways to leave a legacy to the Lighthouse, but did you know you there are additional benefits that go along with your gift?

  1. Many planned gifts such as the Lighthouse’s own Gift Annuity offer you a variety of tax benefits.
  2. Gifts of $25,000.00 or greater become members of the Lighthouse Legacy Society.
  3. Recognition at our Annual Redefining Vision Appreciation Breakfast.
  4. Confidence in knowing you’ve made a difference in the life of someone that is blind, DeafBlind or blind with other disabilities.
  5. It’s a known fact that philanthropists live a longer more fulfilling life.

Planned gifts enable the Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind Foundation build a sustainable future for our Employee and Community Services Department (ECS). Your legacy becomes part of an endowment that will ensure the future of programs and services offered to our employees that is central to their upward mobility, self-sufficiency and independence.
There are as many choices for a planned gifts, and many factors that go into choosing the planned gift that is right for you. The most common planned gifts include:

  • Bequests & Wills
  • Chartiable Gift Annuities
  • Life Insurance
  • Trusts
  • Real Estate
  • Age: Anyone at any age can make a planned gift, but age does make a difference in the type of gift and options available to you. Some options fit better when we are 25-50, while others are more ideal during our retirement years.
  • Size of Gift: Depending upon the size of the gift some options are better than others particularly for the purposes of personal and estate taxation.
  • Assets: Whether cash, stocks, physical property or other negotiable assets these all play a factor in proper estate planning.

Your financial and / or legal advisor will be able to help you put together a plan that takes into account all these factors and ensure that your estate plan is fits where you are at in your lifetime.

Making a planned gift to the Lighthouse is as easy …

  1. Contact Kate Wiegel, Director of Institutional Relations, by phone at (206) 436-2116, or email to discuss leaving a legacy to the Lighthouse.
  2. Seek the advice of your financial and / or legal advisor.
  3. If you include the Lighthouse in your plans, please use our legal name and Federal Tax ID.

Legal Name: Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind Foundation

Address: 2501 South Plum Street, Seattle, Washington 98144
Federal Tax ID Number: 16-1648213

  1. Download & send the Legacy Gift Notification Form

Planned Gift Options

Making a bequest to the Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind Foundation is one of the simplest and easiest ways to help ensure the Lighthouse endures and continues to serve the blind and Deaf-Blind communities. Not only are bequests simple and easy to make, bequests carry a number of other benefits to the donor, including estate tax deductions. The benefits of making a bequest include the following:

  • Bequests can take many forms. You have many options when it comes to leaving a bequest! You can leave a certain amount of cash or property. You can bequeath a percentage of your estate. You can make a gift of residual assets after all other bequests, taxes, and estate expenses have been paid. And you can make a bequest contingent on the status of your heirs.
  • Bequests are easy to implement. You can simply add a codicil to your existing will or have your attorney incorporate a bequest when preparing a new will.
  • Bequests are revocable. You can revoke a bequest at any time without losing any assets.
  • Bequests are flexible. Bequests can be for any amount and for almost any purpose. You can also change the bequest as circumstances or life goals change.
  • Bequests remain in the donor’s control for life. You retain control of your bequeathed assets and property. There is no immediate out-of-pocket donation.
  • Bequests can be used to honor loved ones. You can make a bequest in honor or in memory of a loved one.
  • Bequests qualify for an estate tax deduction. The main tax advantage of making a bequest is that a charitable bequest is deductible for federal estate-tax purposes for the full amount of the gift.

To establish your bequest as part of your estate planning talk with your legal advisor or contact our Director of Institutional Relations, Kate Wiegel at (206) 436-2116 or

The Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind Foundation, in partnership with the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, offers Charitable Gift Annuity arrangements starting at $25,000. With a gift annuity, the donor gives cash or other assets to the Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind Foundation via The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation and, in exchange, receives fixed payments in quarterly installments. The size of the payments depends on the size of the contribution and the age of spouse or someone else such as a parent, sibling or friend.

  • Charitable Gift Annuities provide fixed income for life. Gift annuities are ideal for providing supplemental retirement income for life. They are unaffected by interest rates or fluctuating stock prices.
  • Charitable Gift Annuities have no contribution limit. Unlike qualified retirement plans, gift annuities have no contribution limit and the donor receives income and capital gains tax benefits.
  • Charitable Gift Annuities can be paid to one or two donors. Annuities ensure continuous income payments to a surviving spouse without probate hearings.
  • Charitable Gift Annuities are tax-advantaged. The donor receives an income tax deduction. The donor may deduct up to 50 percent of adjusted gross income for cash gifts, and up to 30 percent of adjusted gross income for gifts of other assets, in the first year; the excess may be carried forward for up to five additional years.
  • Annual payments are tax-advantaged. The annual payments are taxed favorably and a portion of payments from cash gifts will be tax-free for a term of years. If a gift is made using appreciated property such as securities or real estate, the donor avoids tax on a portion of the capital gain.

To discuss whether or not a Charitable Gift Annuity is right for you please contact Kate Wiegel, Director of Institutional Relations at (206) 436-2116 or contact The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation directly at (253) 383-5622.

Do you have a life insurance policy you purchased years ago to provide financial protection for your spouse and young children? Do you no longer really need it? If so, it may be a great asset to give to the Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind Foundation. Consider the benefits when you irrevocably name the Lighthouse as both the owner and beneficiary of the policy:

  • Receive an income tax deduction. When you fill out your itemized tax return, you can claim a charitable deduction for the cost basis of the policy or an amount approximately equal to the cash surrender value of the policy. For deduction purposes, the gift is treated as though it were cash. If you can’t use the full deduction in the first year, you can carry forward the unused portion up to five additional years.
  • Reduce your estate size, reduce tax burden! At the end of lifetime, the face value of most life insurance policies is included in the estate of the deceased. For some estates, this can mean a significant increase in estate taxes. However, transferring the policy during lifetime will remove this “hidden” asset and reduce the size of your estate and any applicable taxes.
  • Leave your current income undisturbed. Many people desire to give more to the Lighthouse, but are concerned about their own cash flow and any unforeseen emergencies. They are reluctant to reduce investment assets so to not negatively impact their lifetime security. We at the Lighthouse do not want any of our friends to jeopardize their comfort in making charitable gifts. Yet there may be an instance you have either forgotten about an “obsolete” life insurance policy or consider it an unneeded asset. In this scenario, the beauty of giving such a policy is that it doesn’t affect your current income stream.
  • Easy to do. Making a gift of life insurance is easier than you might think. Your life insurance professional can help you obtain a transfer form from the insurance company or you can contact the company directly.
Donate real estate, a vacation property, commercial building or undeveloped land, or you choose to use this asset to fund a charitable trust benefiting the Lighthouse. You may even donate your home and continue to live there for the rest of your lifetime.