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Note From The Editor: October 2017

Editor in Chief Susan R. Lipp discusses this month's issue.

In recent weeks, giving has been on the minds of many to help those who’ve suffered from three major hurricanes that have caused massive destruction (with more on the way). The images of the damage caused by Harvey, Irma and Maria have inspired donations of money, blankets, clothes, food and shelter, among other items. For some, the notion of helping those in need is spurred by particular events, while for others, it’s a continuing part of their financial and estate planning.

For professionals advising those in the latter category, our annual Charitable Giving issue provides an interesting range of philanthropic strategies and ideas. For example, as Jonathan G. Tidd explains in his article, “The Use of Disclaimers in Charitable Gift Planning,” p. 23, disclaiming a charitable gift may be the right move in certain situations, but donors and charities must understand the consequences. Also, there are strict rules concerning charitable trust investments, including the trustee’s duty to diversify. “Diversifying Charitable Remainder Trust Investments,” p. 39, by Conrad Teitell, Daniel G. Johnson and Katherine A. McAllister explores the details of this duty and provides some cautionary tales for trustees. And, if your clients prefer to form their own foundation, they may be interested in creating a private operating foundation (POF). “Consider the Private Operating Foundation,” p. 58, by Steven J. Chidester and Helen S. Cheng explains the basics of the POF and why this may be a better choice for some clients than a donor-advised fund.

On another note, last month I told you about the winners of the Trusts & Estates Distinguished Author Awards. We’re in the final stages of putting together all the winning articles in a special digital edition that we’ll distribute to all our subscribers. All the articles are top-notch, but if you’re interested in charitable giving, be sure to check out the winning articles in the Philanthropic Planning category. 

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