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How It Works

  • Contact your bank to complete or update your POD (Pay on Death) form for your checking, savings accounts and jointly-held accounts.
  • Designate FCNL to receive the remaining account balance after your passing.


  • You maintain control and use of the account balance during your lifetime.
  • Receive a charitable deduction which will reduce any estate or inheritance taxes.
  • FCNL receives the balance of the accounts to use according to your wishes.

Checking and Saving Accounts: A Gift You Can Make

When you opened your checking and savings account, you signed paperwork describing how the bank account will work. Do you remember what will happen to the bank accounts after you pass away? POD is short for “Pay on Death.” The POD form tells the bank who will receive the funds remaining in the bank account when the account owner passes away. Your loved ones and/or FCNL may be listed on the POD form. This is a meaningful way to begin your charitable legacy. It also keeps your bank accounts from becoming part of your estate, which may have to be administered by the probate system in your state.

Jointly Held Accounts

You may be a joint-owner of the account or you may have made a loved-one a joint owner. The joint-owner may make deposits and withdrawals during your lifetime. The joint owner may also have “rights of survivorship,” meaning that he/she will automatically inherit the account when you pass away. Even if you have a joint account, you should complete the POD form to assure that the bank knows what to do with the remaining assets when both account holders have passed away. This step will also assure that the account may not become part of a time-consuming and costly probate process.

Note: Gifts to Friends Committee on National Legislation are not tax deductible. If your estate is likely to be greater than $5.45 million, you can receive an estate tax benefit from giving to the FCNL Education Fund instead (Tax ID #52-1254489). Since only about 1% of estates are large enough to be taxed by the federal government, there rarely is an estate tax benefit to naming FCNL Education Fund instead of Friends Committee on National Legislation. We therefore encourage you to give these gifts to Friends Committee on National Legislation. Please check with a tax advisor to see if your estate will likely be subject to federal or state estate taxes. Read full disclaimer.