FAQs: Private Foundation

1. My spouse and I have set up a foundation that permits us to make donations to the foundation before the end of the tax year and to make distributions to charities in the future. All of our donations are irrevocable and the foundation holds only cash. How do I report this foundation?

Do not report this foundation in Schedule A. If you have a position with the foundation (e.g., “trustee”), report your position with the foundation in Schedule D, Part I.

2. I established a charitable gift fund account through a commercial company that offers such accounts to the public and manages them. Do I need to report this as a charitable foundation?

In most cases, you would not need to report anything in Schedule A or Schedule D, Part I for a charitable gift fund (also known as a donor-advised fund).

With these funds, you make irrevocable contributions to an account and recommend how the funds in your account are to be distributed. Since the funds have been irrevocably transferred, you do not have a personal financial interest to report in Schedule A. In addition, although you may make recommendations concerning your account, the account is not itself a separate charity and the fund administrators retain final control over such decisions. You, therefore, do not hold a reportable position as officer, director, trustee, etc. with the fund.

Please consult your agency’s ethics official for further guidance if you have an account for which you retain (or your spouse or dependent child retains) a personal interest or fiduciary responsibilities.


This guide is not intended to provide investment advice, and you should not rely on statements in this guide when making investment decisions.

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