Donor Advised Funds

What is a Donor Advised Fund?

A Donor Advised Fund (DAF) is simply an investment account created to make charitable giving easier and more impactful, while providing greater flexibility, efficiency, and control to its Donors. It is designed to optimize the giving you are already engaged in.

Donors and their Financial Advisers may use a DAF as a financial planning tool for income tax deductions, legacy giving, estate planning, and wealth transfers.

Think of a Donor Advised Fund as a more flexible and efficient charity foundation that may be used by individuals, families, trusts, and corporations. Donors request grants to qualified charities as they wish, then leave the DAF to handle the administration.


  • A Donor Advised Fund simplifies charitable giving for Donors.
  • The Donor makes one contribution to their fund and receives one receipt for their tax deduction, rather than tracking multiple contributions and receipts to and from charities.
  • The Donor can request distributions at any time, and the DAF takes care of getting that distribution to the charity.


  • A Donor Advised Fund provides greater flexibility, allowing the Donor to separate the timing of charitable tax benefits from when charities receive a donation.
  • The Donor can increase contributions during higher-earning years to reduce taxable income and use the fund to maintain charitable giving during lower income years.
  • A Donor Advised Fund can have successor owners, so the Donor controls the family giving traditions and wealth transfer in the future.

Financial Benefits...

  • Unlike a personal account, investments grow tax free inside a Donor Advised Fund. Such tax-free growth could provide all or a significant portion of your annual charitable giving budget.
  • As with usual charitable giving, contributions to a Donor Advised Fund create an income tax deduction with annual limits and a carry forward of unused deductions.
  • For high-net-worth families, contributions are removed from the Donor’s taxable estate and probate process, thus avoiding the Federal estate tax.
  • Donors can contribute a variety of assets, including cash, investments, business shares, or real estate. Donors often contribute highly-appreciated assets to avoid the capital gains tax.

The aim of Monument Legacy is to provide the best benefits of a Donor Advised Fund, while avoiding the drawbacks that come with them. A donor may engage a community foundation, large financial firm, or other Donor Advised Fund, but each has their respective restrictions.