Gift Acceptance Policy

If you have any questions about a gift and if it can be accepted please speak to BCC’s Development team at 410-922-2100

Purpose

To establish standards for gift acceptance.

Policy

BCC solicits and accepts charitable gifts to help fulfill its mission. In addition to working with BCC’s development team, BCC urges all prospective donors to seek the assistance of independent legal and financial advisers in matters relating to their gifts.  BCC desires that all donors fully understand any potential tax and estate planning effects their gifts may have.

BCC’s marketing material and fundraising solicitations may speak generally as to the benefit of a certain type or method of giving.  However, these materials should not be construed as legal or tax advice.  Every donor’s tax situation and the effect a gift may have on it is unique.

The following policies and guidelines govern acceptance of gifts made to BCC for the benefit of any of its operations, programs or services.

No provision hereof shall be construed as requiring either that any particular proposed gift be accepted or that any particular proposed gift be rejected.

Use of Legal Counsel

BCC will seek the advice of legal counsel in matters relating to acceptance of gifts when appropriate. Review by counsel is recommended for:

  1. Gifts of securities that are subject to restrictions or buy-sell agreements.
  2. Documents naming BCC as trustee or requiring BCC to act in any fiduciary capacity.
  3. Gifts requiring BCC to assume financial or other obligations.
  4. Transactions with potential conflicts of interest.
  5. Gifts of property which may be subject to environmental or other regulatory restrictions.
  6. Any other transaction in which the Agency deems necessary.

Restrictions on Gifts

BCC will not accept gifts that (a) would result in BCC violating its corporate charter, (b) would result in BCC losing its status as an IRS § 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, (c) are too difficult or too expensive to administer in relation to their value, (d) would result in any unacceptable consequences for BCC, or (e) are for purposes outside BCC’s mission.

Decisions on the restrictive nature of a gift, and its acceptance or refusal shall be made by the Gift Acceptance Committee or by the Executive Committee and/or Board of Directors where required. The Gift Acceptance Committee consists of the President & CEO, the Vice President of Finance, the Vice President of Development, the Board Chair, and the Board Treasurer.

The Gift Acceptance Committee shall be considered to have taken action when such action has been concurred in by at least a majority of the members of the Gift Acceptance Committee.

Gifts Generally Accepted Without Review

Cash

  • Cash gifts are acceptable (and appreciated) in any form, including by check, money order, credit card, or on-line via the organization’s website.
  • Donors wishing to set up a reoccurring gift (e.g. monthly, quarterly) are welcome to do so via the website, sending in a reply card, or calling the Development team.  Donors may modify, pause, or cancel reoccurring gifts at any time by contacting the Development team at 410-922-2100.

Marketable Securities

  • Marketable securities may be transferred electronically to BCC’s account maintained at its brokerage firm or delivered physically with the transferor’s endorsement or signed stock power (with appropriate signature guarantees) attached.
  • All marketable securities will be sold promptly upon receipt unless otherwise directed by the Board of Directors Finance Committee. In some cases marketable securities may be restricted, for example, by applicable securities laws or the terms of the proposed gift; in such instances, the decision whether to accept the restricted securities shall be made by the Gift Acceptance Committee.
  • More information about gifts of stock or other appreciated assets can be found here.

Bequests and Beneficiary Designations

Specifically: Revocable Trusts, Life Insurance Policies, Commercial Annuities and Retirement Plans

  • Donors are encouraged to make bequests to BCC under their wills (by indicating a % of the estate or via a stated amount).
  • Donors may also name BCC as the beneficiary under trusts, life insurance policies, commercial annuities and retirement plans.

Charitable Remainder Trusts

  • BCC will accept designation as a remainder beneficiary of charitable remainder trusts.

Charitable Lead Trusts

  • BCC will accept designation as an income beneficiary of charitable lead trusts.

Gifts Accepted Subject to Prior Review

Certain forms of gifts or donated properties may be subject to review prior to acceptance. Examples of gifts subject to prior review include, but are not limited to: 

Tangible Personal Property

The Gift Acceptance Committee shall review and determine whether to accept any gifts of tangible personal property including but not limited to the following considerations:

  • Does the property further the organization’s mission?
  • Is the property marketable?
  • Are there any unacceptable restrictions imposed on the property?
  • Are there any carrying costs for the property for which the organization may be responsible?
  • Is the title/provenance of the property clear?

Life Insurance Ownership

  • BCC will accept gifts of life insurance where BCC is named as both beneficiary and irrevocable owner of the insurance policy. The donor must agree to pay, before due, any future premium payments owing to the policy.

Real Estate

BCC is extremely grateful for donors who are exploring or intend to leave a gift of real estate.  Because real estate can expose BCC to potential liability, BCC recommends that donors indicate that BCC is to receive the proceeds of the sale of property, rather than transferring outright ownership of the property to BCC directly.

If a donor desires to designate BCC as the owner of real estate directly, the gift is subject to review by the Gift Acceptance Committee and must by approved by the Executive Committee and Board prior to acceptance.

Prior to acceptance of any gift of real estate, BCC shall require an initial environmental review by a qualified environmental firm at the donor’s expense. In the event that the initial review reveals a potential problem, the organization may retain a qualified environmental firm to conduct an environmental audit. Criteria for acceptance of gifts of real estate include but are not limited to:

  • Is the property useful for the organization’s purposes?
  • Is the property readily marketable?
  • Are there covenants, conditions, restrictions, reservations, easements, encumbrances or other limitations associated with the property?
  • Are there carrying costs (including insurance, property taxes, mortgages, notes, or the like) or maintenance expenses associated with the property?
  • Does the environmental review or audit reflect that the property is damaged or otherwise requires remediation?

Any gift that with restrictions may not be accepted without the approval of the Executive Committee and Board.

Gifts Subject to Appraisals

All non-cash gifts that are not immediately sellable must be properly substantiated and appraised at fair value by the donor and at the donor’s expense.

Donor Acknowledgement

BCC will acknowledge all gifts in accordance with IRS guidelines. For gifts where the donor received goods or services in return (e.g. attended an event) their gift acknowledgement letter will indicate the value of the goods or services provided and the net charitable donation amount.

If you have any questions about making a gift or if a particular gift or asset can be accepted please speak to BCC’s Development team at 410-922-2100.

Thank you for your generosity and for thinking about our organization.