Retirement assets or life insurance
Make a gift to the University of Minnesota or M Health Fairview through a beneficiary designation on your retirement account or life insurance policy.

Naming the University of Minnesota as a beneficiary of your retirement account or life insurance is a simple and tax-advantaged way to support the University.

As with any gift to the University, you may direct your gift to a specific campus, college, or program.

Retirement account


  • If transferred to heirs, assets in tax-deferred retirement accounts—401(k)s, 403(b)s, IRAs, etc.—are subject to income tax and possibly estate tax. If left to the University, these assets will pass free of tax. For this reason, you may want to consider leaving these assets to the University and providing for your heirs using assets that are not subject to income tax.
  • You can designate the University to receive a percentage or all of the remaining assets in the account.
  • You maintain control over these assets during your lifetime and can change the beneficiaries at any time.

Life insurance

Naming the University as a beneficiary of your life insurance policy is a simple way to make a charitable gift to the University of Minnesota. Gifts of any size benefit students, faculty, research, and programs.


  • Control: You maintain control over the policy during your lifetime, and can change the beneficiaries at any time.
  • Flexibility: You can designate the University to receive some or all of the proceeds of any life insurance policy.
  • Simplicity: Proceeds are not subject to probate and are distributed immediately to beneficiaries.
  • Estate tax reduction: Gifts to the University are not subject to estate tax.

Other options

Here are other ways to make a gift to the University using a life insurance policy, which may also provide income tax benefits:

  • Give a policy for the U of M Foundation to surrender and use the cash value for an immediate impact at the University.
  • Give an existing paid-up policy with guaranteed benefits.

Making your gift

To make an estate gift using retirement assets or life insurance, simply designate the University of Minnesota Foundation as a beneficiary of your account or policy. Each company has its own forms and requirements to designate or change a beneficiary. Please contact your plan administrator or insurance company to request the appropriate forms.

To designate a gift to any area of the University of Minnesota, please use the following information when completing the beneficiary designation form:

Name: University of Minnesota Foundation
Address: 200 Oak St. SE, Suite 500, Minneapolis, MN 55455
UMF Federal Tax ID number: 41-6042488

Notify your beneficiaries

Many financial institutions do not inform beneficiaries of gifts after the owner has passed away. Informing your beneficiaries of your plans ensures that your gifts will go to the people and organizations you have named. It’s also important to tell your charitable beneficiaries how you want your gift to be used.

Let the U know about your gift

If you’ve already named the University of Minnesota Foundation as a beneficiary of your retirement account or life insurance, thank you! We encourage you to tell us about your gift by completing our Estate gift form. This document does not create a binding commitment. Any information you provide about your gift will be kept confidential. By sharing your gift, you ensure that the foundation understands how you’d like your gift to be used. 

Inspire others

All donors who make estate or other planned gifts to the University are welcomed into the President’s Club Heritage Society, a community of forward-thinking donors who have chosen to invest in our University’s future and create a lasting legacy of support for students, faculty, research, and programs. You can share your gift with us and remain anonymous if you choose.

All gifts to the University of Minnesota Foundation are subject to and administered in accordance with the provisions of the Foundation’s governing documents that relate to gift acceptance and administration, which include the Foundation’s ability to repurpose funds to a use as close as possible when the original use is no longer capable of fulfillment.


Information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For information on how any gift may affect your tax situation, please consult with your own professional advisor. 

Planning your estate: getting started

Estate planning may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn't have to be. Our Estate Planning Kit provides some information and tools to help you get started.