Press Releases

Recognizing Religious Diversity While Advising End-of-Year Gifting


Contact: Suzy Shaw

Washington, DC – December 6, 2021:  Today The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) released a new video, Recognizing Religious Diversity While Advising End-of-Year Giving. Approximately 31 percent of the $471 billion of annual charitable giving occurs in the month of December. Annually, religious giving makes up 28 percent of all charitable gifts, twice the amount given to education (14 percent), the next largest charitable segment. In this video, trust and estate lawyers discuss the impact of faith on end-of-year giving and how to respect religious diversity when advising clients. 

Religious-based giving is known by many names such as tithing, philanthropy, charity, Tzedakah, and Zakat. ACTEC Fellow Amy B. Beller moderates the discussion of religious diversity and gifting with Fellows Jonathan J. Rikoon and Raymond C. Odom. The panel offers an overview of the giving traditions in Christianity, Judaism, and Islamic faiths. Each religion brings a different perspective and importance to giving back to the community.

Planning for a Diverse and Equitable Future host, ACTEC Fellow Terrence M. Franklin, said, “I found this video incredibly helpful in informing my understanding of the giving traditions of Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Giving due to religious holidays and end-of-year tax planning is emphasized in December. I recommend to all professionals that they take a few minutes to watch the discussion and become better informed about their clients’ possible religious motivations.”

Learn more about this topic by watching the Recognizing Religious Diversity While Advising End-of-Year Giving video. For further information about ACTEC’s Planning for a Diverse and Equitable Future series, please visit

About The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC): Established in 1949, The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) is a national, nonprofit association of approximately 2,400 lawyers and law professors from throughout the United States and abroad. ACTEC members (Fellows) are peer-elected on the basis of professional reputation and expertise in the preparation of wills and trusts, estate planning, probate, trust administration and related practice areas. The College’s mission includes the improvement and reform of probate, trust and tax laws and procedures and professional practice standards. ACTEC frequently offers technical comments with regard to legislation and regulations but does not take positions on matters of policy or political objectives.

About The ACTEC Foundation:  The ACTEC Foundation is the philanthropic arm of The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel or ACTEC. The Foundation is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) that offers education to families and professionals and supports students interested in the trust and estate area of the law. Through continued financial support, The ACTEC Foundation offers professional development, scholarships and education for a number of important efforts, including legal education, educational support, public initiatives, legal publications and the student editorial board.

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