Schwab Charitable

Private foundation conversion

Is Converting Your Foundation to a Donor-Advised Fund Right For You?

This survey can help you determine if a donor-advised fund account makes sense for you. Whether you want to convert your private foundation to a donor-advised fund account or are considering one as a complement to your foundation, Schwab Charitable can help.

Control (Question 3 of 10)
What level of legal control do you want over your philanthropy?

I am only comfortable if I have full legal control over all aspects of administration, investment management and grantmaking.1

Don't Know/No Opinion

I am comfortable giving up some legal control as long as I feel that my investment and grant recommendations will be followed, absent a legal or regulatory obstacle.


Relinquishing ownership of an asset to a charitable entity is the trigger event for claiming a charitable tax deduction. Control or donor influence beyond that point varies depending on the charitable vehicle chosen.

Private Foundations:
The board of directors of a private foundation legally controls all administration, investment management and grantmaking activities. They can directly hire staff, charge appropriate expenses to the foundation and grant to a wide variety of causes. The donor(s) who establish the foundation may select the board of directors.
Donor-Advised Funds:
With individual donor-advised fund accounts, donors retain the right to recommend how the charitable assets are invested and granted to public charities of their choosing. Donors' recommendations are generally honored except for explicit regulatory or legal reasons. Typically these are limited to situations in which the recommended charity has lost its tax-exempt status or the grant would result in some personal benefit to the donor. This due diligence performed by the donor-advised fund sponsor is protective of the donor and ensures appropriate use of charitable assets.
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Schwab Charitable does not provide specific individualized legal or tax advice. Please consult a qualified legal or tax advisor where such advice is necessary or appropriate.

Schwab Charitable is the name used for the combined programs and services of Schwab Charitable Fund, an independent nonprofit organization. Schwab Charitable Fund has entered into service agreements with certain affiliates of The Charles Schwab Corporation.

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