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Opening Your Account

Opening a Franklin Charitable Giving Program account is as easy as completing a Donor Contribution Agreement and returning it to your financial advisor, who will further guide you through the application process.

One of the great advantages of Franklin Charitable Giving Program is the simplicity and flexibility of its setup.

To open a Franklin Charitable Giving Program account, complete and sign a Donor Contribution Agreement in the Donor Program Circular, available in the Forms & Literature section of our site. Have your financial advisor fax your completed Agreement to Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. and activate your account online.

It should be noted that your account is activated only after Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. receives and processes your completed Agreement and your financial advisor registers your account online.

Completing the agreement

The information below will help you complete the Agreement correctly and completely:

1. Designate account donor(s). You are the registered account donor. You can name additional donors who are joint contributors to the account.

2. Name your account. You'll be asked to choose a name for your charitable giving account, as it will appear in correspondence. You may want to incorporate the donor's name, such as the Smith Family Foundation. You may also want the name to reflect your charitable goals, such as the Arthur Jones Education Fund.

3. Name account advisors. You may name one or more account advisors to share certain account responsibilities with you. An account advisor can recommend grants, but may not name additional account advisors or successors. Often, a spouse or an older child who is not a donor to the account is named as an account advisor.

4. Designate account successors or charitable beneficiaries. You may name one or more successors or charitable beneficiaries to your account. A successor gains full responsibility for decisions relating to the account upon the death of all the original donors, with the ability to make contributions, recommend grants, and name advisors and future successors. Charitable beneficiaries are charitable organizations that may inherit all of the assets remaining in the account or 5% of the account annually upon the death of all the original donors. In the event the recommended charity no longer exists, Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. will award grants to a charity similar to the original charity.

5. Choose a charitable area of interest. In the event that all the donors and successors associated with an account are deceased and a charitable beneficiary is not named, or if the account is inactive for three consecutive years, Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. will make reasonable attempts to contact the donor or named successors of record.

If Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. cannot contact these parties, Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. will direct grants from your account. To honor your charitable intent, you'll be asked to indicate a charitable organization or area of interest (such as education or the environment) you'd like your grants to support.

6. Submit your Donor Contribution Agreement. You must sign the Donor Contribution Agreement and send the original to your financial advisor. Your financial advisor will fax your completed Agreement to Renaissance Charitable Foundation, Inc. and will also establish your account online—only then does your account become active.

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Role of your financial advisor

There are many benefits to using a financial advisor when establishing your Franklin Charitable Giving Program account. Financial advisors can assist you through the administrative processes and help you formulate your charitable mission statement. In addition, donors may elect to have their financial advisors assist in making grant recommendations on their behalf.

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