Charitable Lead Trust

A charitable lead trust allows you to make a significant gift to Dartmouth now, while protecting your assets for future distribution to your family.
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  • Immediate impact: See the difference your gift makes during your lifetime.
  • Future financial benefits: Reduce the cost of passing assets to your heirs, such as lower gift, transfer, and estate taxes.
  • Recognition: Become a member of the Bartlett Tower Society.

How It Works

A charitable lead trust (CLT) is an attractive option for those who have valuable assets they wish to keep within the family, and can provide an income stream to an organization for a set period of time. First, your assets support Dartmouth initiatives you care about. Your wealth then passes on to the next generation of your family, or back to you.

You transfer assets—such as cash, securities, business interest, real estate, or personal property—into a trust. Then the trustees pay the annual income interest to the College (and any other charitable organizations you choose) for a set number of years. When the trust term expires, the remaining assets are transferred back to you or your non-charitable beneficiaries, without passing through your estate.

There are two types of charitable lead trusts:

  • Fixed dollar amount (charitable lead annuity trust): pays a fixed amount annually, at least 5 percent of the initial fair market value of the trust during that year.
  • Fixed percentage (charitable lead unitrust): pays a variable amount annually, which is equal to a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust during that year.

Next Steps

Charitable lead trusts are complex. We advise you to consult your attorney if you’re interested in establishing one. Contact the Gift Planning Office if you’d like more information about this giving option.

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Plan at a glance

Reduce Income Tax
Reduce Estate Taxes
Transfer Wealth to Heirs
Support Charities
Business Interest
Personal Property
Real Estate
After Death
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