B.3. Accepting, Acknowledging, and Documenting the Receipt of Gifts January 1989 Development Policy and Administration Manual Chapter I. Soliciting and Accepting Private Funds Section B. Soliciting, Accepting, and Acknowledging Gifts ************************************************************* ACCEPTING, ACKNOWLEDGING, AND DOCUMENTING THE RECEIPT OF GIFTS Accepting Gifts. When a gift is given to the University, it is not considered legally consummated until the University agrees to the conditions and notifies the donor of acceptance of the gift. If a gift or bequest is received without disclaimer by the University, the University assumes the legal obligation to administer the gift or bequest in a manner consistent with the terms specified by the donor. This obligation arises under an area of the law known as the law of charitable trusts, and is subject to enforcement on behalf of the public by the Attorney General of California. Certain gifts may be accepted only by The Regents (see Section I: B.1, Who Has Authority to Solicit and Accept Gifts?). The notification to the donor of acceptance should indicate the date of receipt of the gift and the amount (if cash) or a des- cription of the gift sufficient to link it to the donor's records (e.g., check for $1,000; 70 shares of Schlumberger, Ltd.; auto- graph manuscript of D.H. Lawrence's Sons and Lovers). It may be either in the form of a letter or in the form of a receipt from a person who has been delegated the authority to accept gifts on behalf of the University. Acknowledging Gifts. An acknowledgment provides timely confirma- tion to a donor that a gift has been received, and may or may not also constitute acceptance of a gift. If an acknowledgment letter is signed by a person authorized to accept gifts on behalf of the University, indicates acceptance, and includes a descrip- tion of the gift and the date of receipt, it constitutes legal acceptance of the gift (see above). Letters of acknowledgment from persons other than those with delegated acceptance authority do not constitute legally recognized acceptance and should not state or imply that a gift has been accepted. In the case of gifts other than cash, care should be exercised so that the acknowledgment and/or acceptance letters do not indicate a value for the gift that could be construed in any way as an endorsement of its value for tax purposes. (For information on acknowledging gifts of securities, see Section IV: D.1; for information on acknowledging bequests, see Section IV: E.2). Chancellors are responsible for establishing appropriate accep- tance and acknowledgment procedures for their campuses. If acknowledgment by the President is also desired, a draft letter should be forwarded to the Director--Development Policy and Administration, Office of the President. ACCEPTING, ACKNOWLEDGING, DOCUMENTING Documenting Receipt of the Gift. In order to protect the tax- deductibility of a donor's gift for a given year, it is important that the University be able to provide concrete evidence that the donor relinquished possession of the gift before the end of the year. Therefore, it is especially important during the last few days of the year that all gift mail be date-stamped when re- ceived. For a gift received after December 31 that was mailed before that date, it is important to retain the envelope bearing the postal cancellation date. It is not necessary that the gift be deposited or accepted by December 31. If the donor has taken all steps necessary to irrevocably tender the gift, then upon acceptance by the University, the date of the gift is deemed for tax purposes to be the date of tender. The Gift/Private Grant Acceptance Report (UDEV 100) is the University's official internal record of acceptance of a gift by an authorized official and should be prepared for all gifts of $1,000 or more (gifts of less than $1,000 are to be documented using procedures established by the campuses); for all gifts to endowed funds; and for all gifts of real property (see Gift/Pri- vate Grant Acceptance Report, Section IV: B.2). For gifts of $1 million or less, the form must be signed by the Chancellor or someone designated by the Chancellor (see Who Has Authority to Solicit and Accept Gifts?, Section I: B.1). For gifts requiring Presidential or Regental approval, forms will be initiated by the Development Policy and Administration Office, Office of the President.