This month, our issue centers on charitable giving. As Robert F. Sharpe, Jr. notes in his article, “Trends in Philanthropy,” p. 13, between now and the end of the year, clients have an opportunity to maximize the impact of their charitable dollars. And, as Robert mentioned to me recently, practitioners who specialize in the area of philanthropy shouldn’t only focus on the tax benefits of giving. Rather, they should also help clients identify and implement their charitable objectives. A number of articles in this month’s Special Edition: Charitable Giving pick up on that theme. For example, in “Charity Should Begin at Home,” p. 46, Susan R. Schoenfeld addresses the issues practitioners need to discuss with their clients to handle matters of legacy and philanthropy and establish a mechanism for giving that lasts beyond the current generation. And, in “Unlikely Philanthropist,” p. 42, Mary C. Moran points out the need for advisors to fully appreciate their clients’ wishes to discuss charitable goals and passions and not to overvalue the importance of tax benefits as a motivation for giving. Moreover, in “QTIPs and Testamentary CRTs,” p. 37, Paul Caspersen explains how individuals can use qualified terminable interest property trusts to support charities in their estate plans.
We would also like to take a moment to congratulate board member David A. Handler, the distinguished 2015 recipient of the Austin Fleming Award. David not only is a member of our Estate Planning & Taxation Committee, but also is the author of our monthly Tax Briefing column and annual “Tax Year in Review.” The esteemed service award, presented annually by the Chicago Estate Planning Council, is given to a person “highly regarded by practicing estate planners for his or her expertise in the field, and who has made a significant contribution to the improvement of estate planning practices.” David is this year’s well-deserved recipient, and we at T&E offer our heartfelt best wishes.