Beneficiary Designations

We recently had a conversation with a donor who is quite familiar with The Catholic Foundation. This donor has a Donor Advised Fund with the Foundation, was a Board Member, has attended countless events, and has even served as an ambassador for the Foundation in their local community. They shared that they recently met with their attorney and updated some of their estate planning documents. Supporting their Catholic faith is important and they want to leave a gift at their death that will benefit their parish. After going through the process with their attorney, the donor realized that the most effective way to leave a gift didn’t need to be done through an attorney at all.

The donor was surprised to learn that to make a meaningful gift, all they needed to do was complete a simple, one-page beneficiary designation with their IRA account manager. It was that simple; one form, two signatures and it was done. They were even able to download the form from the internet, never having to leave the comfort of their house! At their passing, a percentage of their IRA will be transferred to The Catholic Foundation for the benefit of the family endowment fund that was created to support their parish.

A beneficiary designation is one of the easiest and most effective ways to make a planned gift. Designations are frequently made of a variety of retirement plans or insurance policies. A designation can be either primary, the main beneficiary of a plan/account, or secondary, the recipient after a loved one is named as a primary beneficiary. Designations can also be a percentage like our donor friend, allowing a plan or policy to benefit multiple people or organizations.

If you would like to discuss using a beneficiary designation to benefit your parish, school, or other Catholic cause, feel free to contact Scott Hartman at or 614-443-8893.