Charitable Remainder Trust

A charitable remainder trust allows you to provide income to yourself or others for life or a term of years while making a generous gift to Playhouse Square. The income may continue for the lifetimes of the beneficiaries you name, a fixed term of not more than 20 years, or a combination of the two.

How does it work?

You irrevocably transfer assets, usually cash or securities, to a trustee of your choice (for example a bank trust department). During the trust’s term, the trustee invests the assets. Each year, the trustee provides a cash payment to one or more income beneficiaries named by you. The payment must be at least 5% of the trust’s initial value, but can be much higher depending on how long the trust term is expected to be. Payments are made out of trust income and appreciation, or trust principal if income is not available.

When the trust term ends or the donor dies, the trust’s principal passes to Playhouse Square.


  • Stream of income for life or a predetermined number of years
  • Current charitable income tax deduction
  • Reinvestment of appreciated assets without erosion by capital gains taxes
  • Removal of assets from your taxable estate

There are two types of charitable remainder trusts

  • Charitable remainder annuity trust
  • Charitable remainder unitrust

These two trusts are essentially the same. The major difference is that the charitable remainder trust will pay a fixed dollar amount each year. The charitable remainder unitrust has a variable payout, based on a percentage of the assets of the trust, determined each year.

A unitrust provides additional flexibility because you can add assets to the trust at any time.

To establish either of these trusts, contact your attorney or financial advisor.

If you have questions, need further information or wish to discuss your plans, please contact Michelle Ryan Stewart, Senior Vice President of Advancement, at 216-640-8410.