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UT Austin Gift Planner – July 17, 2007

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Welcome to The University of Texas at Austin Gift Planner, an online resource for professional advisors in the estate and financial planning industries. The Gift Planner provides practical information on gift planning issues, reports new developments in charitable giving techniques, connects you with leading professionals, and informs you about key events and resources at UT Austin.

Inaugural issue — July 17, 2007 (Vol. 1, No. 1)

How UT Austin’s Gift Planning team can help professional advisors

Effective charitable planning is an important part of meeting your clients’ personal, financial, and estate planning needs. The University of Texas at Austin Office of Gift Planning offers various charitable giving options that can provide significant advantages for your clients.

There are many ways to make a gift to The University of Texas at Austin. People can make a gift of cash or any number of other assets as diverse as:

  • Stocks and securities, including appreciated securities and closely held stock.
  • Real estate including personal residences, vacation or second homes, farms and ranches, condominiums, and commercial properties.
  • Personal property including antiques, sculpture, artifacts, paintings, other works of art, rare books, and manuscripts.
  • Other gift assets such as life insurance policies, business interests, royalties, patents, mineral rights, and retirement plans.

These types of assets may be used to make outright gifts, bequests, beneficiary designations, or, in some cases, to fund an annuity or charitable trust that provides life income to your clients. You may find these planning strategies helpful as you advise your clients in making decisions that affect their lives and reflect their values.

We also are available to assist in helping you provide your clients with clear and understandable gift illustrations. For more information or to request a gift illustration, please contact the UT Austin Office of Gift Planning at 512-475-9671 or email us.


Dedicated site offers expanded advisor services

Our For Professional Advisors page is devoted to helping you meet your clients’ charitable giving interests and needs. You will find information on how to help your clients leave a charitable legacy, sample language for bequests and trusts, a planned gift calculator, and forms that can easily be downloaded.


Meet a colleague

Sam K. HildebrandThis feature uses a Q&A format to introduce you to one of your fellow professional advisors. Meet estate-planning attorney Sam K. Hildebrand, a shareholder with Clark, Thomas & Winters.

How did you develop an interest in estate planning?

After law school, I started working in tax and estate planning and realized that working with people, with families, was much more personally rewarding than analyzing tax issues for big corporations.

How do you go about learning your clients’ goals?

I ask a series of open-ended questions to prompt clients to talk about their interests and desires. My focus when I enter a meeting is to say very little and to listen.

How does charitable giving fit into the estate-planning process?

Oftentimes people don’t even connect estate planning with charitable giving, so I introduce the topic of charitable giving and then let the client drive the discussion.

How can advisors ask about charitable giving without imposing their values on the client?

I try to make it clear that my personal feelings and interests are not relevant when it comes to whether a client gives to charity. I explain the advantages, both financially and personally, but I let the client determine how far the conversation goes.

How do you assist your clients in identifying their charitable goals?

Often, simply prompting clients to think about how tax-exempt organizations have affected their lives sparks an interest in charitable giving. If this occurs and a client needs additional direction, I can help the client identify potential recipient organizations.

What are the advantages of charitable giving?

The most important advantage is the pure personal joy of giving and benefiting others. People can pick their passions. That’s the personal side of charitable giving, the key to it all.

On the financial side, there are significant income-tax and estate-tax savings that can be achieved through charitable giving.

Are there helpful resources for professional advisors?

There are several software packages, books, and local organizations that are useful, but the best tool that I’ve found is The University of Texas.

For example, several years ago we had a client who wanted to pursue complex charitable trust planning, and at the time we didn’t have the software to calculate the different interests. We called UT’s Office of Gift Planning, and they had it. In Austin, Texas, there’s no other charitable organization that has the extensive charitable planning resources that the University has.

Any advice for younger professionals entering field?

You really have to care about what you’re doing. You should never let planning become too “one size fits all.” Listen to your clients and do your best to create what they want.


Gift Planning team’s expertise at your disposal

Want an extra 40 years experience in gift planning? It’s yours for the asking: Members of UT Austin’s Gift Planning team are ready to share their combined four decades experience with advisors and donors alike.


Coming events

55th Annual Taxation Conference
Nov. 7—9, 2007
Intercontinental Stephen F. Austin
701 Congress Avenue
Austin, Texas 78701