Charitable giving is too often thought about as a matter of tax planning — identifying highly appreciated securities to donate and creating complex structures like charitable remainder trusts and charitable lead trusts.

But the estate tax has declined in relevance for most donors as the federal estate tax exemption has soared — it is $5.49 million per individual this year. Further, as a candidate, President Trump advocated repealing the tax entirely. What’s more, only 18 states and the District of Columbia now have an estate tax, so even state estate tax savings are irrelevant for most donors.

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