Important points about charitable trusts in North Carolina

On Behalf of | Mar 2, 2022 | trusts

For North Carolina residents who have been fortunate enough to accrue wealth and have a successful life, there is often a desire to give back and help those who are in need. As part of their preparation for the future, they will often think about donating to charitable causes. This is undoubtedly a noble endeavor. Still, there is often confusion with how to go about it and ensure that it is adhering to state law. When creating a trust for charitable purposes, there are key facts that should be understood from the outset to make certain it is legal.

What state law says about charitable trusts

There are many reasons for which a charitable trust can be created. If the person wants to help others out of poverty, for example, the trust can be created for that. It can be crafted to benefit educational or religious programs. Or it might be used to advance the city, the state, science, the arts and health. In short, there is a long list of reasons for which a trust can be created. Regarding its validity, a gift to charity is perfectly acceptable. It is also useful to note when a charitable gift will not be declared void or invalid.

If the gift is unspecific and is described in general terms as to its charitable goals, it is still valid. If it is part of a trust, the trustee will have discretion as to who benefits from it and how to complete the purposes detailed in the trust. Even if trustees are not given instructions, do not have a delineation of powers or requirements as to how the charitable goals will be met, it remains valid. If the gift violates the law or rules against estates, it is not automatically invalidated. For general gifts, the trustee has certain leeway to decide who would benefit more from the charity or find better purposes to administer it. The trustee can also decide on the means to accomplish the goals unless they are already provided beforehand.

Charitable planning may require comprehensive advice

People who want to benefit others through charitable planning should not walk in blindly. Regardless of the reasons for the charitable giving, what the goals are and how it is expected to proceed, it is vital to have professional assistance to ensure that it is done according to the law and in the manner the person wants. Having legal advice is useful to achieve the desired goals and consulting with those experienced in these matters is a wise first step.