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Naming Friends Committee on National Legislation* as the beneficiary of a qualified retirement plan asset such as a 401(k), 403(b), IRA, Keogh or profit-sharing pension plan will accomplish a charitable goal while realizing significant tax savings.

How It Works

  • Name or designate Friends Committee on National Legislation* as a beneficiary of your IRA, 401(k), or other qualified retirement plan.
  • Pass the balance of your retirement assets to Friends Committee on National Legislation by contacting your plan administrator.
  • Important! Tell Friends Committee on National Legislation about your gift. Your plan administrator is not obligated to notify us. So if you don’t tell us, we may not know.


  • Continue to take regular lifetime withdrawals.
  • Maintain flexibility to change beneficiaries if your family’s needs change during your lifetime.
  • Your heirs avoid the potential double taxation on the assets left in your retirement account.

Naming FCNL as a Retirement Plan Beneficiary

It’s simple to name Friends Committee on National Legislation* as a beneficiary of your IRA or other qualified retirement benefits.

It can be costly to pass such assets on to heirs because of heavy tax consequences. By naming Friends Committee on National Legislation as a beneficiary of a retirement plan, the donor maintains complete control over the asset while living, but at the donor’s death the plan passes to support FCNL. For 99 percent of estates, the transfer will be free of income taxes (see below).

Making a charitable gift from your retirement plan is easy and should not cost you any attorney fees. Simply request a change-of-beneficiary form from your plan administrator. When you have finished, please return the form to your plan administrator and notify FCNL. We can also assist you with the proper language for your beneficiary designation to FCNL.

What are the tax implications of a gift of retirement plan assets?

When you designate FCNL as the beneficiary for all or part of your qualified retirement plan assets, those assets pass to us free of any tax. However, when these assets are passed to your heirs (other than your surviving spouse), they are subject to federal income tax and may also be subject to federal estate tax (depending upon the value of your estate) as well as various state income, inheritance and estate taxes. Because retirement plan assets are typically the most highly taxed assets when you pass on, they are the ideal choice for charitable gifts, designating other assets to your heirs.

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 the 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. 

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The material presented on this Planned Giving website is not offered as legal or tax advice. Read full disclaimer.