The United States Congress passed the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (the SECURE Act) as part of a larger appropriations bill. The SECURE Act, which went into effect on January 1, 2020, included changes to rules governing retirement accounts. 

Highlighted below are just three of the changes to discuss with your advisor along with suggestions on ways to use your retirement account to support the areal at Tufts important to you. 


Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) Age Raised: If you were born on July 1, 1949, or later, you will not be required to take a required minimum distribution until age 72.

  • Giving Opportunity: Beginning at age 70 ½ you can still make a qualified charitable distribution (QCD) from your IRA to public charities, like Tufts, and exclude the amount of the gift from your gross income for federal tax purposes. Once you turn 72 years old, the amount of your QCD may count toward your required minimum distribution.


Age Limitation Rules Repealed: If you have earned income, you can now contribute to a traditional IRA regardless of your age. 

  • Giving Opportunity: Using a retirement account to fulfill your charitable goals is a tax efficient way to make a lasting difference at Tufts. For many, retirement accounts may be one of the largest and most highly taxed assets they own, since they may be subject to both estate and income taxes if left to an individual other than a spouse. Tufts is a tax-exempt institution, so when you name the university as a beneficiary of your retirement plan, 100% of your gift will support Tufts.


“Stretch” IRA Eliminated: Most non-spouses who inherit an IRA must withdraw all funds from an inherited IRA within 10 years following the death of the account holder (previously, distributions could be “stretched” over the beneficiary’s life expectancy). This 10-year rule can result in a large tax bill, especially for those who inherit an IRA during their peak earning years.           

  • Giving Opportunity: A charitable remainder trust may offer a way to provide lifetime income to heirs. You create a testamentary charitable remainder trust that would be funded by your IRA at your passing. The trust pays income to the individuals you name in the trust; thereby, stretching out the distributions previously limited over a 10-year period.


The Gift Planning Office is prohibited from giving legal or financial advice, and nothing provided herein should be interpreted as such. We encourage you to consult with your own advisor when considering a gift to Tufts University.