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Brittany Lawson's charitable practice brings easy client conversations

Friday, February 26, 2021 - 17:08

Before FP Brittany Lawson began recommending charitable solutions to her clients, she wanted to learn more about the benefits of incorporating generosity into holistic financial plans. She and her husband established a donor-advised funds part of her due diligence, using appreciated stocks for their initial contribution.

“We won’t pay taxes on any capital gains or the dividends, leaving even more money for us to give to our church and charities we support,” Brittany says. “My vocational ministry is to help people make good choices with their money and be more generous,” she says.

‘Giving while you’re living’ and much more
She has already helped more than a dozen clients create their own donor-advised funds. She finds it to be an easy conversation. “Christians expect us to talk about how generosity plays into their financial strategy,” she says. “They want to hear about stewardship and creative giving.”

When introducing the the donor-advised fund offering, Brittany talks about “doing the giving while you’re living” and how clients maintain control of their gifts. But what really gets clients’ attention is learning all that’s possible after they’re gone. “We get to have fun conversations about naming children and grandchildren as successor advisors to make their generosity last for generations.”

Workshops educate clients on charitable opportunities 
The 2017 federal tax law changes have provided an opportunity for Brittany to educate clients about bundling a few years of charitable gifts to exceed the threshold for itemizing. She hosts workshops twice a month at her office and invites clients who may be looking for ways to reduce their tax bill.

“Talking to clients about being strategic with tax deductions and then using those tax savings to do other planning has transformed my practice,” she relates. Depending on clients’ age and charitable priorities, Brittany pivots to conversations about roth IRA conversions, giving appreciated assets, qualified charitable distributions and more.

“My clients are living out their generosity and loving it,” she says.