Planned Gifts

A planned gift is a unique opportunity to create a lasting legacy at Clark Atlanta University.

There are various types of planned gifts at CAU including: A) bequests; B) life insurance; and C) real estate, tangible property and securities.

Planned giving helps the donor and the financial advisor to develop a gift that meets an individual's philanthropic goals. A properly planned gift makes it possible to reduce or eliminate gift, estate and capital gains taxes. Planned gifts also allow the donor to utilize estate and tax planning techniques to provide for charity and other heirs in ways that maximize the gift and/or minimize its impact on the donor’s estate.

Through planned giving, you can:

  • Leave a legacy for CAU;
  • Realize gift or estate tax deductions 


Types of Planned Gifts:

A. Bequests and Estate Plan Gifts

You may make a bequest or gift through your estate by including a provision in your will or living trust, or by naming CAU as a beneficiary of a retirement plan or life insurance policy. The amount left to the university can be expressed as a dollar amount or as a percentage of the assets to be given.

B. Publicly Traded Securities

Publicly traded securities can be used to make an outright charitable gift. If you give appreciated securities that you have held longer than one year, you are entitled to a charitable deduction on your income tax for that full fair market value of the securities. You also may be able to defer or completely avoid capital gains tax on the securities, depending on the type of gift. Publicly traded securities can also be given to Clark Atlanta University through one’s estate or transferred electronically from a brokerage account to CAU.

C. Real Estate

Donating appreciated real estate, such as a home, vacation property, undeveloped land, farmland, ranch or commercial property can make a great gift to our organization.

D. Retirement Plans

A retirement plan can be a very tax-efficient and simple way of including the University in your estate plans. The best method is to name Clark Atlanta University as a primary or secondary beneficiary on your plan’s beneficiary designation form. The tax advantage stems from the fact that most retirement plans (other than Roth IRA’s) are subject to income taxes – and possibly estate taxes - if left to an individual beneficiary; however, a charity that is named as the beneficiary does not pay income or estate taxes on the distribution. Thus, the full value of what is distributed can be used by CAU as a gift from your estate, supporting the purpose you designate.

E. Life Insurance

You can make Clark Atlanta University the beneficiary of a life insurance policy, and your estate will receive a charitable deduction from estate taxes for that gift. You may also, under certain circumstances during your lifetime, make CAU the owner of a life insurance policy on your life, and receive an income tax charitable deduction for a portion of the face value of that policy.


Should you require any assistance or information regarding any of the campaigns and or major gifting, please do not hesitate to contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at (404) 880-8000 or We welcome all inquiries.