What is a Charitable Remainder Trust and how can it help my estate planning?

A Charitable Remainder Trust is a Trust that can be used to sell highly appreciated assets (retirement benefits, Employee Stock Options, etc.) at greatly reduced tax consequences. A Charitable Remainder Trust can be used to save income, gift, and/or estate tax. The basics of the Charitable Remainder Trust are that you or your designated beneficiary will receive an annuity interest in the Trust for a term of years or the lifetime of the income beneficiary, with a charity or charities of your choice receiving the remainder interest of the Trust. In addition to the tax savings offered by a Charitable Remainder Trust, you will be able to fulfill your philanthropic goals by giving a charity or charities of your choice a remainder interest in the Trust.