United States Gift Acceptance Policy
Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE)
United States Gift Acceptance Policy
Approved by Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees
18 February 2020
This policy applies to all philanthropic gift activities of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) within the United States. These gift guidelines are intended to guide the staff at CASE when discussing current and deferred gifts with individual donors, their advisors and organizations. It is intended to establish processes and policies to accept these types of gifts and administer them at CASE.
I. GIFT DEFINITION
A gift is a voluntary transfer of money or other assets to an organization from a donor, which can be an individual, a corporation, or a grant making organization, such as a foundation. No tangible benefit of any kind will be exchanged for the gift.
Prior to a gift being accepted, a review may be conducted to determine if the gift, the donor, and the donor’s intent are consistent with CASE values and beliefs and align with the CASE vision and mission.
II. GIFT ADMINISTRATION - GENERAL
A. Gift Processing
1. Gift Acceptance Committee (GAC)
In order to ensure that all gifts to CASE and naming opportunities are within the scope of CASE’s mission and will not incur any undue expenses, a Gift Acceptance Committee (GAC) will be established. The GAC is responsible for the implementation of the gift acceptance policy and for periodically reviewing the policy to determine if revisions are needed. All gifts are reviewed to determine if they meet the standards and requirements of the CASE Reporting Standards and Management Guidelines.
Members will be appointed by the president and will include the chief financial officer, two members of the Board of Trustees, and the vice president for development. This Committee will review all gifts that exceed $300,000 and any types of gifts that pose questions that cannot be resolved by the President and CEO of CASE. The CASE chief financial officer or chief operating officer may also determine if the Committee should review a particular gift in question, prior to acceptance of the gift. The Committee may review gifts to determine if the gift, type of gift, donor making the gift, and the donor’s intent are consistent with CASE values and beliefs and align with the vision and mission of CASE. The Committee will approve all significant naming opportunities available at CASE.
The Gift Acceptance Committee may also determine the status of long-term pledges that have not been fulfilled within their expected timeframe. The president shall be kept apprised of the deliberations of the Gift Acceptance Committee as to naming opportunities, long term pledges, or significant gifts and any determinations by the Committee are subject to approval by the president and CEO and/or Board of Trustees. The president and CEO shall be the final arbiter.
2. Coordination Among All Offices
All fundraising activities must be approved by the vice president for development.
CASE recognizes that accurately processing a gift in a timely manner is important to both the donor and to CASE. Therefore, all efforts will be made to coordinate the process among the development office, membership systems, and the accounting office. In addition, anyone else who should know about the gift, such as the president or a trustee, should be notified timely so that a letter of thanks can be sent from the appropriate party to the donor. The development office will assume primary responsibility to ensure the gift process is correct and thorough.
3. Providing Gift Receipts
CASE provides all donors a gift receipt in accordance with IRS guidelines. Gift receipts and acknowledgements are developed and sent to trustees by the senior executive assistant to the President and CEO and for all other donors by the vice president for development.
Accordingly, CASE will rely on these regulations to advise donors on their deductions.
A donor may wish to remain anonymous. Every effort will be made to respect the wishes of the donor under these circumstances. The identity of anonymous donors will be known to the president, chief financial officer and the vice president for development. Gift records are confidential and can only be divulged with the approval of the vice president for development, the chief financial officer, or the president or as otherwise may be required by applicable law. The CASE Data Privacy and Security Policy will be followed.
For gifts to the US organization, IRS requires gifts in excess of $5,000 or 2% of the total gifts received by a tax-exempt organization be disclosed on Form 990 Schedule B including the donors name. This schedule is not open to public disclosure but the required information, including donor’s name, will be provided to the IRS.
IRS rules stipulate that gifts of service cannot be considered as a donation. As such no receipt will be provided. Other forms of recognition are possible.
B. Cash Gifts
Cash, which includes cash, check, money order, credit card, and CD’s and bond, etc. are accepted by CASE. If undesignated by the donor, the funds will be used by CASE where it believes it is needed most (“unrestricted”). A donor also has the option to designate his or her gift to a particular fund or multiple funds. The donor should be encouraged to make the designation clear in a written statement of intent or verbally, if making a gift over the phone. The receipt will specify the amount and designation of the gift.
C. Non-Cash Gift Assets
Publicly Traded Securities: Gifts can be made in the form of publicly traded corporate securities, otherwise known as stocks, mutual funds, ETF’s, etc. Gifts of publicly traded securities are based on the fair market value of the securities on the date of receipt. Publicly traded securities are valued, recorded, receipted and acknowledged in accordance with IRS regulations. Securities are liquidated as soon as practicable unless otherwise directed by the president/CEO.
2. Corporate Matching Gifts
CASE encourages donors to apply for matching gift funds from their employers, if applicable. Unless otherwise stated by the donor, the matching funds will be applied to the same fund as the donor’s direct gift if this meets the matching gift company’s policies.
3. Tangible personal property
Gifts of tangible personal property include items such as books, antiques, artwork- otherwise known as “gifts-in-kind”, oil and gas interests, partnership interests, family limited partnerships, and other assets. Gifts-in-kind must be directly related to the mission of the association. Final authority on whether to accept a gift-in-kind rests with the Gift Acceptance Committee, subject to the approval of the president/CEO. CASE reserves the right to deny a gift and to dispose of a gift when appropriate.
III. Ways of Giving
A. Outright Gift – A voluntary and irrevocable transfer of cash, publicly traded securities, non-liquid business interests, real estate or tangible personal property without the expectation of, or receipt of, direct economic benefit.
B. Matching Gift – Many companies have matching gift programs that will match employee donations to 50l(c)(3) organizations.
C. Pledge – A promise to make a gift over a period of time or at a future date. The pledge agreement outlines the amount of the gift, any donor designations, and the anticipated payment date or dates. A pledge may be unconditional, conditional or an intention to give. A conditional pledge is a promise to give only if future and uncertain conditions are met. Donor imposed designations are not the same as conditions. An intention to give is considered a revocable agreement. Unconditional pledges are recorded for accounting purposes in accordance with generally accepted accounting standards as codified by FASB. All pledge types are recorded for recognition purposes in the fundraising database in accordance with advancement and foundation procedures.
Pledges may be accepted for established CASE programs or purposes. The pledge payment schedule typically does not exceed 5 years. Payment schedules exceeding 5 years should be reviewed by the Gift Acceptance Committee. Pledges for new or not yet existing programs, or otherwise non-standard agreements exceeding $300,000 must be approved by the Gift Acceptance Committee.
D. Philanthropic Grant – Grant support from externally sponsored agreements which are charitable in nature are reported as grants. Pledge and payment information for such agreements will be provided to the development office and the chief financial officer.
E. Deferred (Planned or Bequest) Gift – A gift which CASE will receive at a future date (usually upon the death of the donor or beneficiary) or over a period of time. Deferred gifts include bequests and retirement plan designations, life insurance policies, charitable gift annuities, charitable remainder trusts, charitable lead trusts and remainder interests in real property.
1. Bequests and Retirement Plan Designations - CASE accepts charitable bequests and retirement plan designations and will abide by donor designations indicated in the related documents, assuming such designations are applicable to current programs within CASE. If the intended use falls outside of the law and CASE policy, CASE will adhere to the laws and regulations of the District of Columbia regarding such matters.
IV. Legal and Tax Counsel
The donor should have legal and/or tax counsel representing him or her in most planned and outright gift transactions. The engagement and cost of counsel is the responsibility of the donor. Donor’s legal or tax counsel should review and approve the language of any document and the viability of the planned gift design within the context of the donor's financial and estate plans.
V. DECISION-MAKING STRUCTURE
A. Outside Counsel
CASE will employ outside legal counsel when appropriate to provide assistance in the acquisition of certain gifts. The decision to hire outside legal counsel will be made by the chief operating officer.
A. Disclosure – General
At the time the gift is established, CASE provides all donors with appropriate disclosure about their gifts, appropriate acknowledgements, and confirmation of their gift intentions.
A. Donor Relations
CASE considers the donor's intent and circumstances to be of the utmost importance. Every effort will be made to ensure that each gift is beneficial to, and in the best interest of, both CASE and the donor. Factors considered in this assessment include the donor's charitable intent, financial position, the effect of the gift on the donor's individual estate, potential heir disputes, and the donor's mental state.
If there is a concern over the ethical implications of a potential gift, regardless of its value, it will be referred to the Gift Acceptance Committee for their discussion and review. If any potential donor or gift should give rise to concern considering the CASE Statement of Ethics, they will be referred to the Gift Acceptance Committee for review. CASE reserves the right to not accept a gift or if necessary, return a gift, if the concern rises to this level by the CASE staff and the Gift Acceptance Committee.