When you include Harvard Medical School in your estate plan, you create a legacy to help secure a healthier tomorrow.

Your planned gift directly helps to improve health and well-being for all.

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Which gift option is best for you?

Your Goal(s) Future Gift:
Wills & Trusts
Future Gift:
Beneficiary Designations
Income Generating Gift:
Income Generating Gift:
Estate Tax-Beneficial Gift:
Reduce income taxes
Reduce estate taxes
Reduce capital gains taxes
Received fixed income for life
Receive income for life, hedged for inflation
Keep assets during lifetime
Help your heirs avoid income tax
Contributing Assets
Appreciated securities
Real estate
Art, antiques, patents, and other personal property

Assets to Give

  • Cash/Credit

    • Qualify for a deduction for the full value of your gift
    • Utilize the deduction for up to 60 percent of your Adjusted Gross Income
    • Carry forward any unused deduction for up to five additional years

    Learn more about how to give »

  • Beneficiary Designations

    Designating HMS as a beneficiary of your IRA, investment account, savings account, or donor-advised fund is as easy as filling out a form. These assets make for tax-wise gifts to HMS—especially retirement accounts, which can be the most highly taxed assets many people hold and are subject to income tax when distributed if left to individuals.

    Tax Identification #04-2103580
    HMS gifts are managed under the umbrella of Harvard University’s Federal Tax Identification Number.

    How It Works

    • Name HMS as a full or partial beneficiary of the remainder of your IRA, 401(k), 403(b), Keogh, tax-deferred annuity, or other qualified retirement plan. Also consider other accounts in your asset umbrella, such as investment accounts, savings accounts, or donor-advised funds.
    • Request a change of beneficiary form from your plan administrator and name the “President and Fellows of Harvard College, for the benefit of Harvard Medical School” as a beneficiary, along with the percentage you would like HMS to receive. Complete the form and submit it to your broker, banker, or agent. In many cases, the process can be completed online.


    • Fulfill your financial, tax, and estate planning goals 
    • Reduce or eliminate estate tax
    • Improve health and well-being for all 
    • Create enduring impact at HMS 

    If you are 73 years old or older, you can transfer up to $100,000 from your IRA directly to Harvard Medical School.

    2023 Update: The Secure Act 2.0 of 2022 has updated the minimum required age for withdrawal to 73. Additionally, donors can now roll up to $50,000 of IRA funds into charitable gift annuities, with limitations. Please contact giftplanning@hms.harvard.edu to learn whether this is a viable option for you.

    • CHECK
      Download the IRA Rollover Letter of Instruction and request that your IRA administrator issues a check for your selected dollar amount directly to HMS.
      Contact Alumni and Development Services-Trust Administration at 866-845-6596 or donorsecuritygifts@harvard.edu. To ensure proper processing of your gift, please notify Harvard of the transfer by completing this online form.
      Direct transfer to the following account:
      Bank of America, 100 Federal Street, Boston, MA 02110
      President and Fellows of Harvard College, ADS account
      Account #: 9429263621
      Ach ABA: 011000138
      Wire ABA: 026009593
      Swift Code: BOFAUS3N
    • Once the wire transfer arrangements have been made, please provide the following information to giftplanning@hms.harvard.edu:
      Name/location of bank sending the transfer Amount of gift / Date of transfer
      Name of the HMS fund, program, or research area the gift is supporting 
  • Real Estate

    How It Works

    Owning real estate that has appreciated in value since it was purchased or inherited can be wonderful. However, that real estate can become a significant tax burden that you no longer want to manage. If so, consider helping yourself while helping HMS by making a gift of real estate. You might also consider using your property to help generate income for the future. Here are some flexible arrangements to meet your needs:

    • Give your entire property by transferring the property deed to HMS. Harvard will sell the property, and the proceeds will support the area of your choosing. One hundred percent of its appraised market value is deductible for income tax purposes.
    • Give a percentage of your property by deeding a percentage interest in your property. When it sells, you and HMS share proportionately in the proceeds. The income tax deduction from your gift can offset the capital gain generated by the sale.
    • Receive income for life by funding a charitable trust or gift annuity with your property. You and another beneficiary will receive annual income for life. Trust assets can be invested in the Harvard endowment and provide variable income for life, while gift annuities provide fixed income for life. Both gifts qualify for an immediate income tax deduction, plus you can save on estate taxes and minimize or avoid capital gains tax.
    • Leave your property through your will or trust and reduce or eliminate estate taxes while fulfilling your financial, tax, and estate planning goals.

    Acceptable Properties

    • Personal residence
    • Vacation home
    • Farm or agricultural land
    • Ranch
    • Commercial property or lot
    • Undeveloped or unimproved land


    • Obtain assistance from Harvard in selling your property
    • Secure a charitable income tax deduction and potentially save on gift and estate taxes
    • Receive quarterly income for life from a trust or annuity
    • Unlock appreciated assets without incurring capital gains tax
    • Avoid separate investment management fees for certain gifts and access broad investment diversification through Harvard Management Company
    • Improve health and well-being for all
    • Create enduring impact at HMS

    For more information, please contact our gift planning team at 800-922-1782 or email giftplanning@hms.harvard.edu.

  • Securities (Stocks, Bonds, and Mutual Funds)

    How It Works


    • Qualify for a deduction for the mean market value of a security you have owned for at least one year
    • Utilize the deduction for up to 30 percent of your adjusted gross income
    • Carry forward any unused deduction for up to five additional years
    • Reduce potential capital gains tax