The Acadia Squam Group is pleased to share below several important DAF and philanthropic stories from the second quarter of 2021. If you wish to learn more about our detailed perspectives on these items, feel free to contact us by clicking in the menu, above.

1) Announcement of S. 1941 – Proposed DAF Legislation: This is just the formal announcement of S. 1941, Accelerating Charitable Efforts (ACE) Act, proposing legislative adjustments in the treatment of DAFs and foundations. Note that formal legislative language is not yet available and that no companion bill has been introduced in the House. Also, importantly, the 15-year-awaited draft regulations on DAFs and Supporting Organizations are still expected shortly from the Treasury Department. They may turn out to be either supportive of the proposed bill or serve as a regulatory option in terms of addressing some perceived shortcomings of DAFs.

2) Summary of S. 1941 Legislation: A succinct summary of proposed legislation.

3) Ray Madoff May 2021 DAF Report: Professor Madoff has been espousing action on endowments, foundations and DAFs for many, many years. Her latest report continues challenging “commercial” (more commonly known as “national”) DAF policies and practices over the last 30 years. Her findings align with her previous work and were well-timed with the announcement of proposed legislation (see #4 below).

4) Schwab Charitable Lawsuit Dismissed: Not a surprising outcome. What maybe more interesting is that the media has virtually left unreported the favorable court ruling for Fidelity Charitable back in February in a much-publicized suit against it initiated in the summer of 2018.

5) Summary of Giving USA Report: 2020 was a challenging but positive year for American philanthropy. Success was not uniform, however, across the sector. See a June 25 letter to the editor of the Chronicle of Philanthropy that provides evidence that 2020 giving was not quite as rosy as the headlines portray.