Bighorn sheep in Glacier National Park climbs up a rocky mountain side

Donors who pay tax in Montana could qualify for a $10,000 tax credit

There is a way to take advantage of a fantastic endowment tax credit offered to Montana taxpayers while supporting the landscapes and wildlife you love FOREVER!

Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative has established an endowment fund at Montana Community Foundation for the permanent benefit of our organization’s vital work to connect and protect habitat from Yellowstone to the Yukon.

Even better, qualified contributions to this endowment will enable donors to take advantage of the Montana Endowment Tax Credit (METC) — a direct credit toward your Montana state tax liability. Individuals can claim up to $10,000 in METC annually or $20,000 for couples filing jointly, and business donors are eligible for up to $10,000 as well.

If you are able to make a gift of $2,500 or more to help ensure a strong and vibrant future for the Yellowstone to Yukon region and could benefit from receiving a direct credit on your Montana taxes, this is an excellent opportunity to consider.

Here is how it works:

The state of Montana considers certain types of “planned gifts” from individuals — such as charitable gift annuities, deferred charitable gift annuities, charitable trusts, and gifts of paid-up life insurance — to be donations that qualify for the METC.

Your contribution is made directly to the Montana Community Foundation and set up as a planned gift that will provide future benefit to the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative Fund Endowment.

Charitable Gift Annuity: Donors receive lifetime income payments in exchange for their contribution. A charitable gift annuity (CGA) can be a simple and effective way to meet both your charitable and financial needs.

Receive tax benefits in the year of the donation, including the METC, to apply to your state taxes and an itemizable deduction on your federal taxes.

You will immediately begin receiving a fixed amount of annual income in the form of an annuity payment. The income payments will continue for the remainder of your life and/or a joint annuitant’s life (such as a spouse).

After the final annuitant dies, the balance remaining in the CGA will be transferred to the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative Fund Endowment and provide a lasting impact for nature, forever.

Contributions of $10,000 or more can be used to fund a CGA.

Deferred Gift Annuity: If receiving annual income in exchange for the gift is not important or necessary to you, then a deferred charitable gift annuity (DGA) contribution is an excellent and highly popular option to qualify for the METC.

  • The start date of the annuity income payments is deferred out years into the future, typically to a date just prior to the donor’s life expectancy, which is the maximum deferral period allowed by the state of Montana.
  • In doing so, this provides you with the greatest tax benefit for your gift by yielding the most METC and largest itemizable deduction.
  • The DGA is held intact in your name for 5 years, a waiting period required by the state, during which time it is invested with the intention that the balance will grow beyond the original gift amount.
  • Once the waiting period is over, the DGA can then be closed out and the balance transferred to the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative Fund Endowment for our organization’s benefit.
  • Contributions from $2,500 can be used to set up a DGA.

Both planned gift vehicles are easy to set up and offer tax-efficient and impactful strategies for donors to help meet their financial and charitable goals. Plus, they provide enduring support for the important work Y2Y does to safeguard one of the last remaining intact, and arguably the wildest, large mountain region on the planet.

To learn more about how you can support Y2Y’s work for nature through our endowment fund at the Montana Community Foundation, and take advantage of the tax credit and other benefits, please contact Renée Krysko, director, donor relations at 1-800-966-7920 ext. 105 or legacies (at) y2y (dot) net.