If you’re financially comfortable and feeling generous, there’s a new pension law that could help your generosity go further.

A provision in the new federal Pension Protection Act of 2006 creates a new option for owners of Individual Retirement Accounts who want to share their wealth.

The law permits owners to donate their IRAs to charity without first counting it as income and paying tax, said Mary Witten Wiseman, president of the Foundation for the Tri-State Community Inc.

Under the new law, when the money is donated to charity it doesn’t count as income, so it isn’t taxed. That preserves the entire amount for charitable purposes, Wiseman said.

The catch is the law expires at the end of 2007.

It’s a giving option that will mostly appeal to the well-to-do who won’t be depending on their IRAs to live on during retirement, Wiseman said. What they will be able to do is make a larger and more meaningful gift to the charity of their choice, she said.

The foundation can help potential donors who want their gift to benefit local entities, she said. Serving eastern Kentucky, southern Ohio and southwestern West Virginia, the foundation can help set up endowments for the charity of the donor’s choice, she said.

The foundation also can help set up a fund to benefit a group of charities of the donor’s choice, she said.

“For anyone interested in establishing a permanent legacy in this community, this is the opportunity of a lifetime to make the gift of a lifetime,” she said.

In 2006 and 2007, IRA owners who are at least 701/2 can make direct charitable transfers up to $100,000 per year. A single person can transfer $200,000 federal tax free and a married couple can transfer up to $400,000 federal tax-free from separate accounts.

MIKE JAMES can be reached at mjames@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2652.

ASHLAND If you’re financially comfortable and feeling generous, there’s a new pension law that could help your generosity go further.

A provision in the new federal Pension Protection Act of 2006 creates a new option for owners of Individual Retirement Accounts who want to share their wealth.

The law permits owners to donate their IRAs to charity without first counting it as income and paying tax, said Mary Witten Wiseman, president of the Foundation for the Tri-State Community Inc.

Under the new law, when the money is donated to charity it doesn’t count as income, so it isn’t taxed. That preserves the entire amount for charitable purposes, Wiseman said.

The catch is the law expires at the end of 2007.

It’s a giving option that will mostly appeal to the well-to-do who won’t be depending on their IRAs to live on during retirement, Wiseman said. What they will be able to do is make a larger and more meaningful gift to the charity of their choice, she said.

The foundation can help potential donors who want their gift to benefit local entities, she said. Serving eastern Kentucky, southern Ohio and southwestern West Virginia, the foundation can help set up endowments for the charity of the donor’s choice, she said.

The foundation also can help set up a fund to benefit a group of charities of the donor’s choice, she said.

“For anyone interested in establishing a permanent legacy in this community, this is the opportunity of a lifetime to make the gift of a lifetime,” she said.

In 2006 and 2007, IRA owners who are at least 701/2 can make direct charitable transfers up to $100,000 per year. A single person can transfer $200,000 federal tax free and a married couple can transfer up to $400,000 federal tax-free from separate accounts.

MIKE JAMES can be reached at mjames@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2652.

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