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Gifts of Life Insurance


A life insurance policy allows you to make a meaningful philanthropic gift while preserving other assets for yourself and your family.


A life insurance policy provides a great opportunity to support any area of UCLA that you wish. In many cases, this requires no cash outlay, which frees you to plan and pursue other financial goals. There are two basic ways to use a life insurance policy for charitable purposes.

Naming UCLA as the beneficiary of your policy

  • You can make The UCLA Foundation the primary or secondary beneficiary of your life insurance policy.
  • Simply fill out a beneficiary designation form that you obtain from your insurance company.
  • The UCLA Foundation will use the entire amount of the policy, free of tax, for the purpose you specify.
  • Naming The UCLA Foundation as a beneficiary ensures the privacy of the transaction. Also, because a life insurance policy is a contract that passes outside a will, it cannot be contested in probate proceedings. Both factors may be important to donors who are concerned about the division and distribution of their estate.

Naming The UCLA Foundation as the irrevocable owner and beneficiary of your policy

  • This entitles you to a charitable income tax deduction for the policy's cost basis or for its cash surrender value, whichever is less.
  • If you transfer ownership of a policy that is not fully paid up, premiums continue to be due, and payments need to be made to The UCLA Foundation. You may deduct future premium payments as charitable contributions.
  • The UCLA Foundation will use the amount of the policy for the purpose you specify.

Contact Us

800-737-UCLA (8252) • giftplanning@support.ucla.edu

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UCLA's gift planning professionals are happy to provide you and your legal and financial advisors with personalized illustrations of the benefits that a gift of life insurance offers. Any information in this publication is not intended as legal, accounting, or financial advice. Please consult with your tax, legal, and financial advisors to ascertain whether this or other gift plans are in keeping with your own tax and financial needs. Conversations with the university's gift planning team are always confidential and never imply obligation.


Read the latest news from campus: How campus units are collaborating to provide PPE for medical staff • UCLA researchers and global effort to test therapies • A summary of the "CARES Act" Congress signed into law and Gift Planning news. read more

New Tax Law Changes with the CARES Act

Congress recently passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) that includes several charitable tax provisions to encourage giving. These include:

  • A new deduction for donors who do not itemize when filing their tax returns. If you do not itemize but make a cash gift to charity, you will be allowed to take a special tax deduction, up to $300, to reduce your tax liability.
  • An increase in the deduction limit up to 100% of a donor's annual income for cash gifts (previously the deduction was capped at 60% of annual income). If you make a gift, you will be able to deduct more this year.

If you are interested in learning more about these opportunities, please contact UCLA's Gift Planning team at 800-737-8252 or at giftplanning@support.ucla.edu. Please also let us know how we can help you during this time.