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Gifts of Closely Held Stock

You give shares of closely-held stock to TCNJ. TCNJ offers the stock back to your company for redemption or re-purchase and uses the proceeds for its programs.

A gift of closely held stock usually represents a minority block of the total outstanding shares. After obtaining a qualified appraisal of the shares (required if the gift’s value is above $10,000) that takes into account a discount for the minority interest, the desired gift is made. It is deductible at the appraised value and produces income tax savings at a marginal rate of, say, 35 percent. For a gift valued at $50,000, the maximum income tax savings is $17,500.

As a charitable organization, The College of New Jersey Foundation normally does not invest in closely held corporations; we may accept the gift as long as there are no preconditions on what we will or will not do with the stock. The corporation normally does not welcome outside stockholders and is likely to offer to redeem the stock at its appraised per share valuation, and preferring to have cash to invest, we likely would sell.

Has the gift cost the sole stockholder $32,500 ($50,000 worth of stock minus $17,500 in tax savings)? Not if the corporation redeems the stock and retains it as treasury stock. The donor is still the sole stockholder. With the reduction in the number of shares outstanding, all held shares went up in value to maintain the same total ownership of equity in the firm.

The only cost to the donor is the after-tax income realized had the cash come from the company as dividends or salary, minus the tax savings from the deduction. This can net out at about one-fourth of the value of the gift to us.

A caution: There can be no prearranged contract or agreement for The College of New Jersey Foundation to sell the stock or for the corporation to buy it if the donor wishes to avoid being taxed on the gain.

A variation of the plan is for the stock to be repurchased from The College Foundation of New Jersey by employees or younger family members.


  • You receive gift credit and an immediate income tax deduction for the appraised value of your shares, even if their original value was close to zero.
  • You pay no capital gains tax on any appreciation that has taken place in the shares.
  • Under certain conditions, you may be able to use closely-held shares to fund a life-income arrangement.
  • You can have the satisfaction of making a significant gift that benefits both you and TCNJ during your lifetime.

Find out how you might benefit from a planned gift.