Planned Giving is an important component of and a significant contributor to the financial success and sustainability of nonprofit organizations.

Planned Giving “is focused on planning now for charitable gifts that will be realized upon the death of the donor, rather than current contributions to operations or capital campaigns,” explains Suzi Schomer, Vice President and Wealth Strategist at Montecito Bank & Trust Wealth Management.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 greatly increased the amount of an individual’s exemption from estate taxes.

“As a result, many donors now work with their advisors to optimize the income tax benefits of charitable giving strategies,” Schomer says. “And with high current valuations of securities and real estate, the motivation to fulfill the donor’s charitable inclination through planned gifts is of increasing interest to both the donor and the nonprofit organization.”

Montecito Bank & Trust is in a unique position as the only trust company headquartered on the Central Coast with offices from Westlake to Solvang, and a local team of trust officers and portfolio managers with expertise in charitable giving strategies and charitable trust administration. 

“Our role in planned giving is to work with experienced and knowledgeable attorneys and accountants to design and implement customized planned giving approaches for our clients,” Schomer says.

With Montecito Bank & Trust’s legacy of corporate support to nonprofits and its industry-leading banking and lending services, many nonprofits rely on them to provide information and resources for their planned giving programs.

“Each donor’s situation is unique and there is no single strategy that is of interest or benefit to every client,” Schomer says.

When you are considering setting up a planned giving program to benefit a favorite charity, Montecito Bank & Trust is your strongest partner. The community bank’s own long-standing tradition of philanthropy ensures they are well-versed with the intricacies of structuring planned giving programs that generate ongoing tax advantages for the donor. Additionally, they also have the expertise to manage the gift for the recipient organization so that the effects of your generosity will be magnified for years to come.

While there are many benefits to planned giving programs, there are also a number of nuances, requiring that you choose the right partner to help you develop your ideal program. When you enlist a trusted fiduciary, like Montecito Bank & Trust, you have the confidence in designing a program that fits your specific financial situation, ensures compliance with all applicable regulations, and also safeguards the capital.

With Montecito Bank & Trust as your partner, the approach is collaborative; your trustee and investment manager are involved from the start so that any adjustments to your personal financial plan can be made as things proceed. Conveniently, each of these services is available from the largest and oldest locally owned community bank on the Central Coast.

Comprehensive services at Montecito Bank & Trust include:

  • Program Planning and Implementation
  • Investment Management
  • Distribution Management
  • Cash Flow Analysis
  • Tax Planning and Compliance
  • State and Federal Tax Reporting

“Our knowledge and expertise in the planning and implementation of planned giving strategies, including management of charitable remainder trusts, offers our clients a seamless approach to achieving their charitable goals.”

Other planned giving approaches include beneficiary designations in life insurance policies and retirement accounts. Some nonprofits offer charitable gift annuities and retained life estate arrangements and other specialized planned giving vehicles.

“Montecito Bank & Trust is often involved in the initial donor conversation to identify potential strategies to assist our client or a donor referred to us by our nonprofit partners,” Schomer adds. “We welcome inquiries and value our nonprofit relationships that benefit our communities.”

Montecito Bank & Trust is located at 1106-E Coast Village Road in Montecito. The Westlake Village Branch is at 968 South Westlake Boulevard, in Westlake Village. For more information, visit Montecito.Bank or call 805.963.7511.