Gifts in the form of cash and checks are accepted regardless of amount unless, as in the case of all gifts, there is a question as to whether the donor has sufficient title to assets or is mentally competent to transfer legally the funds.
Cash gifts can take the form of currency, coin, checks, money orders, or bank drafts. Checks should be made payable to the Sisters of St. Francis of Dubuque with a letter stating the donor’s designation of the gift. Cash gifts are accepted for either unrestricted or appropriately restricted purposes.

Appreciated securities

Gifts of readily marketable (publicly traded) securities are encouraged because of their tax advantage to the donor. They will be valued at midpoint market price on the date that a signed stock transfer is postmarked (if mailed) or on the date the stock is transferred to an account of the Sisters (if the transfer happens through a broker).

Gifts of securities which are not readily marketable (not publicly traded) will only be accepted after the approval of the gift acceptance committee, or its designee. The appraisal must be current and dated within sixty (60) days of the gift.

  • Gifts of closely held corporate stock will be accepted on the condition that a qualified appraisal of the stock’s value is supplied by the donor. The stock’s sale can only be restricted for the length of time agreed upon by The Sisters and the donor at the time of the gift.
  • Gifts of bond and other securities or papers that require a “holding” period or have a maturity date will be accepted if agreed to by the gift acceptance committee.

Gifts of securities meeting the criteria below will NOT be accepted:

  • Securities which could create a liability to The Sisters.
  • Securities which by their nature, may not be assigned (such as series “E” bonds).
  • Securities which, upon investigation, have no apparent value.

Charitable Gift Annuity

Give and you shall receive! Donors may make irrevocable gifts to the Sisters of St. Francis of Dubuque and receive a guaranteed income for life. The donor receives a current income tax deduction which produces current tax savings, and also receives a portion of guaranteed income as tax-free income. The Sisters will not accept an initial charitable gift annuity for less than $5,000.00 or from anyone, or any couple, younger than 60 years old. The rates guaranteed will not exceed the rates published by the American Council on Gift Annuities.

Life Insurance

The Sisters will encourage donors to name the Sisters of St. Francis of Dubuque, Iowa to receive all or a portion of the benefits of life insurance policies which they have purchased on their lives. Gifts of life insurance may be accepted by the Director of Development without special approval if the insurance policy is fully paid and The Sisters are the owner of the policy. Gift credit will normally be given equal to the current cash value. Loans against the policy or any item which may adversely affect the validity of the value of the policy shall be disclosed in writing by the donor.

Donors may retain ownership of the policy and name The Sisters as beneficiary, but they should be advised that no income tax benefit will be received.

The Sisters will generally not agree to accept gifts from donors for the purpose of purchasing life insurance on the donor’s life, given that state laws often define that charities do not have an insurable interest on donor’s lives. No insurance products may be endorsed for use in funding gifts to The Sisters. In no event shall lists of The Sister’s donors be furnished to anyone for the purpose of marketing life insurance for the benefit of donors and/or The Sisters.

Gifts of Equipment and Personal Property (Books, Antiques, Furniture, and Automobiles, etc.)

Gifts of equipment or tangible personal property related to the mission of the Sisters of St. Francis are accepted upon the recommendation of the Gift Acceptance Committee or such persons authorized by the committee.

No personal property shall be accepted by The Sisters unless there is a use for The Sisters or reason to believe the property can be quickly disposed of. The Sisters reserve the right to use, resell, or dispose of donated equipment or personal property in the best interests of the Sisters. No personal property shall be accepted that obligates The Sisters to ownership of it in perpetuity. No perishable property or property which will require special security for properly safeguarding will be accepted without prior approval of the gift acceptance committee. Any restrictions to use of equipment or personal property must be agreed to in writing by The Sisters, prior to acceptance.

For accounting purposes only, not for the donor’s tax deductibility, fair market value and the estimated useful life of the equipment for gifts below $5,000 will be determined by the Gift Acceptance Committee or those duly acting on its behalf.

For donations valued in excess of $5,000 (except publicly traded stock) the donor is responsible for acquiring and paying for a qualified appraisal for tax purposes within 60 days of the gift. The donor must submit the appraisal to the Sisters for an acknowledgment signature. This does not, however, constitute the Sister’s agreement to the amount claimed for the donated property. For donated equipment or property in excess of $5,000 (except publicly traded stock) that is sold, exchanged or otherwise disposed of within two years of receipt, an information return must be filed with the IRS by the Sisters of St. Francis.

Donors should be notified at the time of receipt of a gift that The Sisters will, as a matter of corporate policy, cooperate fully in all matters related to IRS investigations of non-cash charitable gifts. The Sisters may require additional information, documentation or other actions by the donor or others to properly protect and provide properly for the best interests of The Sisters.

Gifts of Real Estate

It is the policy of The Sisters to accept gifts of real estate on behalf of the Sisters provided that the property fits into one or more of the following situations:

  • Can be used in connection with its ministerial purposes;
  • Can be sold with the proceeds immediately used for the general purposes of The Sisters, or as provided by the donor;
  • Can be held for the production of income;
  • Can be held for long-term investment purposes; or
  • Can be sold within a life income fund.

No gift of real estate shall be accepted without first being appraised by a party chosen by The Sisters who shall have no business or other relationship to the donor. No gift of real estate shall be accepted without prior recommendation of the gift acceptance committee or its designee.

In general, residential real estate located outside of the continental United States will not be accepted as a gift unless its value appears to be in excess of $200,000 and there is reason to believe it is highly marketable.

The Sisters will not accept property which would jeopardize its tax-exempt status, or expose it to expenses for which no source of funds has been readily identified. Particular attention will be paid during the due diligence process to ensure that all gift property is free and clear of any legal, environmental or marketability problems.

For further information or to make a gift, contact:

Sr. Cathy (Kate) Katoski, OSF
President and Director of Development
Sisters of St. Francis
3390 Windsor Ave, Dubuque, IA 52001
563-583-9786 ext. 1024 (phone)
563-583-3250 (fax)