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Charitable remainder unitrust

What is a charitable remainder unitrust?

A charitable remainder unitrust (CRUT) makes regular payments based on a percent of the trust’s assets. These payments, which can be made to the donor or other named income recipient, can be made for life, a term of up to 20 years, or both. The amount of the annual payments will go up and down based on the trust balance, which is subject to market performance. The amount remaining in the trust at the termination of the trust will go to the donor's choice of funds at Thrivent Charitable Impact & Investing, benefiting charities or areas of charitable work recommended by the donor.

The gift minimum is $100,000 for cash and/or publicly-traded securities/mutual funds, and $200,000 for real estate or closely-held stock (please ask about other gift types). The donor can make multiple gifts into the trust. (If a gift of real estate is being considered, contact Thrivent Charitable for additional information regarding FLIP unitrusts.)

How to establish a CRUT
1. Request a personalized illustration for your client using our request form, or email a gift planner. To create a customized illustration for your client, Thrivent Charitable requires the following information:
  • Client's name, birthdate, and tax bracket; and,
  • Proposed gift amount, including cost basis.
2. Thrivent Charitable sends you an illustration packet to review with your client.

3. If your client wishes to proceed and establish a unitrust, ask them to create a fund and complete and return the charitable remainder trust application, and IRS Form W-9.

  • If the client is giving cash, please do not send any money at this time. The gift will be made once the trust is established. 
  • If the client wishes to give stock, include copies of either the stock certificates or the most recent brokerage statement. Thrivent Charitable will contact you with specific instructions on how to transfer the stock once the trust is established. 
Target audience
  • Clients 50 or older (but may be younger for a term of years trust);
  • Clients interested in additional income;
  • Younger clients (50+) who can withstand market fluctuations;
  • Clients with significant assets;
  • Clients interested in converting an existing asset into a gift that provides a stream of ongoing income;
  • Clients who wish to give appreciated stock and/or real estate, and bypass associated gains;
  • Clients who may wish to make additional gifts to their trust at a later date;
  • Clients who have maxed out qualified retirement plan contributions but still need additional retirement income; and
  • Clients with appreciated securities who are seeking ongoing income for long-term care or wealth replacement insurance premiums.
Potential tax and financial benefits of a CRUT
  • The trust beneficiaries receive variable income payments for life, a term-of-years, or both;
  • The donor receives a charitable income tax deduction in the year of the gift;

    • For gifts of cash, the annual deduction limit is 60% (for gifts January 1, 2018, and thereafter) of the donor’s AGI;
    • For gifts of long-term appreciated securities, the annual deduction limit is 30% of the donor’s AGI;
    • Unused charitable deductions may be carried over an additional five years; and
  • The unitrust sells appreciated assets tax-free; 100% of the gift is reinvested to produce income.
Benefits to you, the financial professional
Thrivent Charitable Impact & Investing will support you with a full range of charitable products and services, and you'll be compensated for your efforts by Thrivent or American Funds.
More about CRUTs
Unitrust Payout Rates
In determining a payout rate, Thrivent Charitable looks to various factors, including the current economy, the prevailing IRS discount rate, and the age of the trust income beneficiaries. Once the percentage has been set in the signed trust document, it cannot be changed. The variable annual payment is calculated annually, based on the percentage in the trust agreement.

Payment Recipients

Payments can be paid to the donor, a relative or friend, and are taxable as income. There may be estate/gift tax consequences if someone other than the donor or the donor’s spouse is named as the income recipient.

Additional resources

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Our team of charitable gift planners utilizes deep charitable expertise to expand your clients' options and help meet their giving goals. Our collaborative approach will allow you to maintain your current client relationships while we provide the most relevant advice that aligns with your clients' financial priorities.

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Thrivent Advisor Network (TAN) Advisors: Contact a gift planner