Planned Gifts

Leaving a gift to Charleston Animal Society in your will, trust, or other planned gift by designating Charleston Animal Society as your beneficiary can make a lasting difference in our vital and compelling work to save the lives of more dogs and cats. Many gifts cost you nothing now, there is no minimum contribution, and you are not locked into a decision you make today.


A bequest to the Charleston Animal Society is a wonderful way to express your love for animals as part of your legacy.


To make the process of creating a bequest simple, use FreeWill, a free, online resource that guides you through the process of creating a will in 20 minutes or less. It’s easy to use, and always free, regardless of whether or not you choose to include Charleston Animal Society in your will. Get started today!

If you have already included Charleston Animal Society in your will or trust, please fill out this form to let us know! We’d love to thank you for your generosity.

How It Works
Include a bequest to Charleston Animal Society in your will or trust. Make your bequest unrestricted or direct it to a specific program within the Charleston Animal Society.

Indicate a specific amount or a percentage of the balance remaining in your estate or trust.

Sample Language:

“I bequeath _________(dollar amount or % of estate) to be used for its general purposes (or you may restrict the gift to a specific program) to the Charleston Animal Society, Inc., or its successors and/or assigns by merger or purchase, federal tax identification number 57-6021863, whose permanent address is 2455 Remount Road, North Charleston, SC 29406.”

Benefit to You 
Your assets remain in your control during your lifetime. You can modify your bequest to address changing circumstances.

You can direct your bequest to a particular purpose (be sure to check with us to make sure your gift can be used as intended).

Under current tax law there is no upper limit on the estate tax deduction for your charitable bequests.

Life Insurance

Charleston Animal Society accepts gifts of life insurance either as the beneficiary of a policy or as the sole owner and sole beneficiary. This can be an existing or employer-provided policy or a paid-up policy.

You can name Charleston Animal Society as a primary life insurance beneficiary or as a contingent beneficiary should your other beneficiaries not survive you.

After your lifetime, the benefits from your policy pass to Charleston Animal Society, free of federal estate tax.

Existing or Employer Provided Life Insurance

How It Works
Contact your life insurance carrier and request a beneficiary form.
Designate Charleston Animal Society as a primary or contingent beneficiary.

Benefit to You
Simple to give: Involves little effort or paperwork.
Financial advantage: Continued ownership of your policy.
Flexibility: You can change your mind and your beneficiaries at any time.
Future tax savings: Removes the asset from your potential gross taxable estate.

Paid-up Policy

How it Works
You transfer ownership of a paid-up life insurance policy to Charleston Animal Society.
Charleston Animal Society cashes in the policy now or maintains it and receives the death benefit later.

Benefit to You
Income tax savings: You’re entitled to a current income tax deduction.
Future tax savings: Removes the asset from your potential gross taxable estate.

Retirement Plans

Retirement Plan Retirement assets include tax-deferred retirement saving accounts, like Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA), 401(k), 403(b), annuities, Keogh, and pension plans.  Gifts from these accounts, while you are still living, may have withdrawal penalties and may have income tax consequences.   However, naming the Charleston Animal Society as the beneficiary of your retirement assets at your death avoids both income tax and estate tax obligations.

If the largest asset in your estate is your retirement plan, such as a 401(k), IRA, or Keogh, you may be surprised to learn that the IRS will impose income tax on the remaining balance in the account if you designate it to a beneficiary other than your spouse.

The income from the after-death distribution of a tax-deferred retirement plan to an heir is taxable as income and is in addition to the estate tax that may be imposed on the account. For estates fully subject to the estate tax, the result can be that up to 75 percent of the value of your retirement plan will be consumed in taxes before your child, relative or friend receives it.

How It Works
Name the Charleston Animal Society as a beneficiary of your IRA, 401(k) or other qualified plan.

Designate Charleston Animal Society to receive all or a portion of the balance of your plan through your plan administrator. The balance in your plan reverts to Charleston Animal Society after your lifetime.

Your gift to Charleston Animal Society is not taxed for income nor for the estate because Charleston Animal Society is a tax-exempt organization.

Benefit to You
Avoid the double taxation your retirement savings would incur if you designated your heir(s) as beneficiary(ies). Continue to take regular lifetime withdrawals. You can remove as a beneficiary if your family’s needs change.

Stocks, Bonds, and Mutual Funds

These are the most common types of securities in a person’s portfolio. By making a gift of securities to the Charleston Animal Society, you can claim the full-appreciated value of the Securities as a charitable contribution deduction and avoid the capital gains tax.

Charitable Gift Annuity

Your contribution of cash or securities to a charitable gift annuity not only support Charleston Animal Society, it provides you or your loved ones with a fixed income payment for life.  These payments are based on your age at the time of the gift.

How It Works
You transfer cash or securities to Charleston Animal Society. Charleston Animal Society pays you or one other beneficiary you name fixed income for life.

The remaining balance passes to the Charleston Animal Society when the contract ends at the death of the last beneficiary.

Beneficiaries must be at least 65 at the time of the gift.
Our minimum gift requirement is $10,000.

Benefit to You
Receive dependable, fixed income for life in return for your gift. In many cases, increase the yield you are currently receiving from stocks or CDs.
Receive an immediate income tax deduction for a portion of your gift. A portion of your annuity payment will be tax-free.

Pet Safe – Pet Trust Program

Ensuring the Care of Your Pets After You’re Gone

If you have pets, you want the comfort of knowing they will be cared for and loved if anything should happen to you.  We strongly recommend that you remember your pets when crafting your estate plan.  Find someone you can trust to leave them to, and talk to this person so they know your plans.  If, however, you do not have anyone to leave your pets to, Charleston Animal Society now offers a program called Pet Safe to ensure your pet is taken care of, in their new home with a loving family, when you are gone or are disabled.

Charleston Animal Society is a local, non-profit corporation, funded through the support of community members like you.

(If your will or trust document does not specify who will transport the pets to our agency in South Carolina, we can work with your personal representative, trustee, or other responsible party to have your pet safely transported to our shelter facilities. The cost of transport outside of the boundaries of South Carolina is the responsibility of the pet owner or his/her estate.)

We suggest a minimum planned gift of $5,000 bequeathed to Charleston Animal Society, Federal Identification Number 57-6021863, to support your pets’ enrollment.

A planned gift may be:

  • A bequest in your will or trust;
  • Naming Charleston Animal Society as beneficiary of your life insurance or qualified retirement plan;
  • Naming Charleston Animal Society as the beneficiary of a “transfer on death” bank or stock account;
  • A charitable gift annuity or a charitable remainder trust.

Required next steps for enrolling a dog or cat in Pet Safe:

  • Complete one Pet Safe Enrollment Agreement for each of your pets;
  • Complete one Pet Safe Pet Profile for each of your pets;
  • Make out a check payable to Charleston Animal Society in an amount of $250 for each pet as a nonrefundable Reservation Fee.
  • Mail completed documents and check to: Pet Safe – Pet Trusts, Charleston Animal Society, 2455 Remount Road, North Charleston, SC 29406.

For more information and other ways to set up planned giving options, please contact our Senior Director of Philanthropy, Natassia Donohue at [email protected].