Excerpt taken from the article.
As the tax-code debate heats up this election season, one cherished break for taxpayers in upper brackets--the deduction for charitable contributions--is under fire.
Not only are tax overhaulers on both sides of the congressional aisle taking aim, but so are both presidential candidates.
That means well-heeled donors should consider whether to accelerate donations planned for future years into 2012, while the tax treatment is still favorable. "We're raising this question with all our clients," says Beth Kaufman
, an attorney at Caplin & Drysdale in Washington.
The threat is shining a new spotlight on "donor-advised funds," which allow donors to donate now and deduct at current tax rates, while making the charitable gifts later. In effect, they are miniature versions of private foundations--but without the considerable expenses or hassles. They also are a rare example of a tax-favored vehicle that can work equally well for the wealthy and the merely affluent.
"It amazes me that my clients with tens or hundreds of millions of dollars are using the same techniques and investments I would" for charitable giving, Ms. Kaufman says.Click here to read the rest of the article on donor-advised funds and their appeal