For most donors, a direct gift or pledge may seem like the easiest and most straightforward way to support Harvard. However, there are a number of creative ways to give that provide substantial benefits to Harvard while offering significant economic benefits for the donor, the donor’s spouse, and the donor’s family. Other options may help a donor minimize income tax, gift tax, and estate tax while maximizing the gift itself.

Together with the Office of Gift Planning, you can help a classmate make a significant gift to Harvard College, the Harvard Kenneth C. Griffin Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, or the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. With expertise in charitable tax law, estate planning, and financial planning, our gift planning team works closely with donors and their advisors to tailor strategies that meet the needs of both donors and Harvard.

Life Income Plans

Life income plans allow donors to make a meaningful gift to Harvard while retaining an income for themselves, their spouse, or other family members for life or for a term of years. At the conclusion of the term, the remaining principal is released to Harvard for a specified purpose.

These arrangements provide many benefits, including:

  • Income to one or two beneficiaries, for life or for a term of years
  • An immediate charitable income tax deduction
  • Capital gains tax savings on a gift of appreciated property
  • Investment diversification
  • Professional management and investment diversification through Harvard Management Company or TIAA Kaspick, with no separate fee

Examples of life income plans include:

Other Planning Strategies

A variety of other gift planning strategies may minimize the donor’s income tax, gift tax, and estate tax while maximizing the gift itself:

For more information, visit the Office of Gift Planning main page or contact the Office of Gift Planning at 
617-496-3205 or