Reduce Taxes

Reduce Taxes

How gifts to Hope and Healing International can reduce taxes in your estate

You can transform the lives of children with disabilities in developing countries while reducing or eliminating taxes payable in your estate.

The first step is to sit down with your financial planner or tax consultant and estimate what taxes will be payable at death or, in the case of a couple, at the passing of the last spouse.

Make an inventory of your assets and estimate how much income tax will be due at death. For instance, a cottage or other real estate, rental property, stocks, mutual funds, business assets, etc., might have capital gains or recapture of capital cost allowance which will be triggered at one’s passing. These will have to be included as income in your terminal or final tax return and possibly result in significant taxes to be paid at death.

In addition, any registered fund (RRSP/RRIF) balances are taxed at death. In fact, where there is no spousal rollover, an RRSP/RRIF is the most heavily taxed asset in an estate. The RRSP/RRIF balance is taxed as income upon death of the second spouse and 40% to 50% can be taxed away.

Capital gains on assets in one’s estate and balances of registered RRSP/RRIFs can result in huge tax hits. Taxes at death can make federal and provincial governments major beneficiaries of
one’s estate.

The good news is that testamentary charitable gifts (gifts that are triggered at the passing of an individual) can reduce these taxes at death or even eliminate them completely.

Testamentary charitable gifts include leaving a gift to Hope and Healing International in your Will, or naming Hope and Healing International as beneficiary in gifts of life insurance, RRSP/RRIFs and TFSAs by direct designation. “In Canada, charitable donations to a registered charity receive a tax credit. For amounts of $200 or less, you receive a combined federal and provincial tax credit worth approximately 25% of the gift. For amounts exceeding $200, the combined federal and provincial tax credit is worth approximately 43%. In addition, since January 1, 2016, a new federal donation tax credit rate increase of 33% applies to gifts in excess of $200 to the extent that an individual has income that is subject to the new 33% income tax rate, that is annual income over $200,000.” In the year of death, Canadians can claim the credit for charitable gifts equal to 100% of net income instead of the normal 75% limit. If there is any unused charitable tax credit, it can then be carried back and applied up to 100% of net income in the year prior to death also. In addition, as a result of the 2014 Federal Budget’s new ‘Estate Donation’ rules, for a death that occurs after 2015, Executors of an estate that qualifies as a graduated rate estate (GRE) will be able to allocate the donation tax credit between the deceased and the deceased’s estate (whichever is most beneficial) as long as the actual gift transfer occurs within 60 months after death. The testamentary gift to the charity will be deemed to have been made by the deceased’s estate at the time the property is transferred to the charity (no longer considered to be a gift made immediately before death) and the charitable receipt will be based on the actual fair market value of the gift at the time of the transfer to reflect any changes in value between death and the time of transfer. There’s now a seven-year claim window where the charitable donation receipt can be claimed for testamentary charitable donations. However, this means if the donation from your Will or RRSPs/RRIFs, insurance or TFSAs is not distributed by your executor(s) to the charity within the 60 month Graduated Rate Estate, there will be a mismatch of tax credit and liability. This will reduce both the estate and gift value. After the 60 months, the donation tax credit would then only be available for use in the year of transfer. To calculate the amount of charitable gifts needed to completely off-set all income taxes in your estate, just multiply the estimated amount of taxes payable by two. This is the approximate amount of charitable gifts you will want to make. In addition, gifts of publicly-listed securities “In Kind” not only qualify for a charitable receipt for the full fair market value, but also receive special tax treatment. Any capital gains which have accumulated in the securities you give to Hope and Healing International are completely exempt from taxes. That means there will be no income tax charged on the (sometimes huge) capital gains that have built up in these securities. This is currently the most tax-effective way to make a gift to Hope and Healing International either now, or at death through your Will. The following are charitable gifts to Hope and Healing International which can significantly reduce or even eliminate taxes completely at your passing because of the charitable receipt and/or special tax treatment. Please note Hope and Healing International’s legal name – Hope and Healing International – must be used:
  • Gifts in your Will (either a portion of the Residue or a Specific Amount)
  • Gifts of Appreciated Securities “In Kind” in your Will
  • Naming Hope and Healing International as beneficiary of your Registered Funds (RRSPs, RRIFs, TFSAs, DPSPs)*
  • Naming Hope and Healing International as beneficiary of your Life Insurance Policy*
  • Naming Hope and Healing International as beneficiary of your Tax Free Savings Accounts*

*Note: Beneficiary designations are not permitted on accounts held in Quebec.

For further information, call us at 1.800.567.2264 or fill out our Request Information form.

NOTE: While the information and opinions expressed in this publication are compiled with the greatest of care, they are not meant to be accepted as legal or financial advice. Opinions expressed are solely the personal opinions of the authors. Material contained herein is provided for general information and is subject to change without notice. Hope and Healing International assumes no liability for claims or losses arising from use of this publication. Readers are urged to always consult their own professional advisors.