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Beneficiary Designations #

A Beneficiary Designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

Many don’t realize that retirement plans, IRAs, life insurance, donor advised funds, and commercial annuities are not affected by a will. These accounts are dispersed according to beneficiary designations. The forms are often easier to update than a will, making them simple ways to leave a legacy.

Just name Indiana University School of Social Work as a beneficiary to receive assets such as retirement plans and life insurance policies after you’re gone. You simply fill out a form that is entirely separate from your will—which makes this approach an easy way to give.

Not only is it an uncomplicated way to give, it’s also flexible—you aren’t locked into the choices you make today. You can review and adjust beneficiary designations anytime you want.

Easy Ways to Leave Your Legacy #

Typically this is the largest source of taxable income when paid to a beneficiary. If you are considering a gift, it is usually better to leave taxable assets like retirement plans to IU School of Social Work and give other assets like stocks or real estate to loved ones

A gift of life insurance is a good way to maximize your impact. By naming the Indiana School of Social Work as beneficiary, your small premium payments transform into a sizable gift. Plus, it is revocable at any time if your plans change.

A donor advised fund (DAF) gives you flexibility to recommend how much and how often money is granted to  the IU School of Social Work and other charities. You can transfer cash or other assets to a community foundation, brokerage house, or other sponsoring organization, and in return, you qualify for an income tax charitable deduction for gifts to your DAF.

 Annuities are tax-heavy assets. Income tax is due on the growth of the annuity—in other words, what its value is worth when you die over what you paid for it. The tax burden makes these assets another popular choice to leave to a tax-exempt organization like the Indiana University School of Social Work.

How to Make It Happen #

Making the Indiana University School of Social Work the beneficiary of your retirement plan assets, IRA, life insurance, or commercial annuities is easy:

  1. 1

    Contact the institution that controls the asset for a change-of-beneficiary form. Many have the forms on their website available for download.

  2. 2

    Decide what amount of the account value you would like IUSSW to receive, between 1-100 percent.

  3. 3

    Name Indiana University Foundation as the beneficiary.

  4. 4

    Return or submit the form as directed by the institution.

  5. 5

    Notify the beneficiaries so they can claim the proceeds at the appropriate time.

Consider This Example #

Susan would like to leave the Indiana University School of Social Work a gift after passing, but would also like to leave something for a family member, Pat. Susan is trying to decide where a $100,000 IRA should go. Naming IUSSW as the beneficiary for 100 percent means we would receive the entire $100,000 to help fulfill our mission. By comparison, if Susan leaves the IRA to Pat, a sizable amount of the IRA would be subject to income taxes.

Next Steps #

To learn more about the advantages of designating the Indiana University School of Social Work as beneficiary of your retirement plan assets, life insurance, donor advised fund, or commercial annuities, or to learn more about changing your designations, please contact Sandy Noe, IUSSW Development Director today at (317) 278-1620 or

Disclosure #

Information contained herein was accurate at the time of posting. The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For such advice, please consult an attorney or tax advisor. Figures cited in any examples are for illustrative purposes only. References to tax rates include federal taxes only and are subject to change. State law may further impact your individual results.

Contact Information #