Retirement plans (such as IRAs, 401(k)s, and other qualified plans) provide a very simple way to make a future charitable gift. On your plan's beneficiary designation form, you simply indicate the amount or percentage you would like to leave to Tufts.

How a Gift of Retirement Assets Works

  • You complete a beneficiary designation form that names Tufts University as a beneficiary of your IRA, 401(k), or other qualified plan.
  • The funds you designate to Tufts will be distributed directly to the university tax-free and outside of your estate.

Benefits of Giving Through Your Retirement Plan

  • Beneficiary designation gifts are easy to set up. Unlike the formality or expense of updating your will, you simply ask your retirement plan representative for a beneficiary designation form or download their online form. This form, on file with your retirement plan’s administrator, determines who receives these assets.
  • If your family’s circumstances change, you can alter the amount or percentage left to the university by completing a new form at any time.
  • You can avoid both income and estate taxes levied on the remainder left in your retirement account by leaving it to a charity such as Tufts.
  • You can continue to make withdrawals from your retirement plan during your lifetime.
  • Retirement plans, in particular, are ideal to transfer to a charity such as Tufts because of the tax burden they may carry if paid to noncharitable beneficiaries, including your children. You can choose to leave other non-taxable assets to heirs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is this an efficient way to give?
Typically, retirement plan balances are subject to both income and estate taxes. Because Tufts is a nonprofit organization, we won't pay income tax on the distribution nor will the gift be subject to estate tax. The entire amount comes to us, and your heirs may benefit from a reduced estate tax burden.

What information do I need to name Tufts as a beneficiary of my retirement account?
You may need the university's legal name, "Trustees of Tufts College," and tax identification number: 04-2103634

Can I name other beneficiaries of my retirement plan in addition to Tufts?
Yes, you may make Tufts a partial beneficiary of your plan and direct the balance to your heirs, other individuals, and other charitable organizations.

A Gift of Retirement Assets is for You if...

  • You have a 401(k), IRA, or other retirement plan.
  • You want to balance your charitable giving with providing for your family.
  • You want to ensure the most tax efficient distribution of the assets in your estate.
If you have questions contact
Tufts Gift Planning Office