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Many folks don’t concern themselves with the laws governing charitable giving. We dole out our contributions when someone asks, and most of us don’t bother to take a charitable tax deduction for those gifts.

Relatedly, most folks also have never heard of donor-advised funds, or DAFs.

The wealthier a donor is, the more likely they are to claim a tax deduction for their giving. When they do, the public has a legitimate interest in where their gifts are going.

DAFs are financial intermediaries that take in charitable gifts from donors and then grant the money to active charities designated by the donor. Donors claim their tax deduction up front when they donate to the DAF before deciding which public charities the money should go to.

Read the full article at Truthout.

Helen Flannery is an associate fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) where Josh Hoxie directs the Project on Taxation and Opportunity.