If you're over 70 and a half, there is a way to make a charitable gift that's of tax advantage to you.
Tax law changes in recent years on qualified charitable distributions (QCDs) allow individuals 70-1/2 or older to give directly from their IRAs rather than having to take a minimum required distribution that would trigger an income-tax bill. A QCD is a direct transfer of funds from your IRA to a qualified charity.
In addition to the benefits of giving to charity, a QCD excludes the amount donated from taxable income, which is unlike regular withdrawals from an IRA.
"The beauty behind the qualified charitable distribution is that it's not a deduction, but, rather, the IRA distribution is excluded from gross income," says Sarah Rebosa a tax specialist and partner in Cullen and Dykman, a New York law firm. "Therefore, individuals who would not otherwise be entitled to a charitable deduction (taxpayers who take the standard deduction) can now obtain a tax benefit from contributing to charities."
Consult with your tax advisor and the bank, brokerage or fund company that has your account for more information.