SETI League Policy Manual
The SETI League, Inc. Endowment Fund
The SETI League, Inc., although a young organization, has developed ambitious long-range educational and scientific goals to bring us closer to fulfilling the objectives of our Mission Statement. Financial resources must be secured to guarantee sufficient means to meet these program objectives if we are to avoid the fiscal fate of the late NASA SETI Office. The most realistic solution to the responsibility of providing for the financial stability of The SETI League is to develop a permanent endowment trust fund.
With a professionally managed fund, expenditures may be restricted so that the principal may remain in perpetuity, with only earned income used annually to support educational and scientific programs. There are many ways that a gift to such a fund may be made to provide the greatest possible tax advantages for the donor. In addition, a planned gift will help the donor achieve financial and estate planning objectives.
Outright gifts of cash, securities, real estate, or other forms of real property will help provide immediate income through the trust fund. For those who choose to make other than an immediate gift, gifts may be made by bequest, a gift of life insurance, a charitable remainder trust, a gift annuity, or other types of trusts.
Contribute to The SETI League Endowment Fund via:
Traditional Methods of Making Endowment Gifts
- Outright Gifts - Outright gifts of cash, securities, real estate, or tangible personal property may be donated. The law provides tax deductions for these gifts.
- Bequests - A donor may bequeath a specific amount or percentage of donor's remainder estate to The SETI League. Contributions by bequest are deductible from the taxable estate. If the donor's will is already written, a simplified codicil may be added to the existing will.
- A Gift of Life Insurance - A life insurance policy may be irrevocably assigned, naming The SETI League as the ultimate beneficiary and owner. The donor receives a tax deduction for the approximate cash value of the policy, as well as a tax deduction for maintaining the annual premiums. The same benefits apply to the donation of a new policy. The donor also has the option of naming The SETI League as a contingent beneficiary.
- Charitable Remainder Trust - A donor may establish a charitable remainder trust, into which may be put various kinds of property, which gives the donor an immediate tax deduction, as well as other tax advantages. Income is provided to designated beneficiaries for life or a term not to exceed 20 years.
- Gift of Farm or Residence - A donor may contribute a farm or residence by irrevocably signing the property to The SETI League while retaining the right to live on it. The donor receives an immediate tax deduction, as well as other tax advantages, and The SETI League ultimately receives possession of the property.
- Charitable Lead Trust - A donor may establish a charitable lead trust for a fixed period of time. The income generated from the trust goes to The SETI League. The donor receives a tax deduction or exclusion and, after the fixed period, the trust assets revert to the donor.
- Tax Laws and Changes - US tax and estate laws encourage individual philanthropy by providing for generous financial incentives that can benefit contributors who share their resources with The SETI League, Inc. Although the Trustees of The SETI League are willing to provide and assist with helpful information on the tax consequences of a gift, tax laws constantly change. Therefore, you are encouraged to consult your attorney, trust officer, or tax counselor to secure specific information regarding your individual needs.
Proper Language for Endowment Gifts
For those wishing to make gifts to the Endowment Fund, the proper language to be used as a legal designation is: "The SETI League, Inc. Endowment Fund." This designation may be used in a will, codicil, charitable gift, life insurance policy, etc., for outright or other direct gifts. It is recommended that this language be used in a letter from the donor to the Executive Director of The SETI League, Inc.
The SETI League, Inc. is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a [501(c)(3)] charitable organization.