Follow QCD Rules to Make Your IRA Qualified Charitable Distributions Count

Retirees can get a tax break for donating up to $100,000 to a charity directly from a traditional IRA.

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With tax reform likely to lead more taxpayers to use the standard deduction instead of itemizing, the move known as the qualified charitable distribution takes on a new sheen. A QCD allows taxpayers claiming the standard deduction to get a tax break for giving to charity. But if you plan to make use of the tax move, you’ll need to check with your IRA custodian on its rules for how to fulfill the QCD.

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Mary Kane
Associate Editor, Kiplinger's Retirement Report
Mary Kane is a financial writer and editor who has specialized in covering fringe financial services, such as payday loans and prepaid debit cards. She has written or edited for Reuters, the Washington Post,, MSNBC, Scripps Media Center, and more. She also was an Alicia Patterson Fellow, focusing on consumer finance and financial literacy, and a national correspondent for Newhouse Newspapers in Washington, DC. She covered the subprime mortgage crisis for the pathbreaking online site The Washington Independent, and later served as its editor. She is a two-time winner of the Excellence in Financial Journalism Awards sponsored by the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants. She also is an adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins University, where she teaches a course on journalism and publishing in the digital age. She came to Kiplinger in March 2017.