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​​16.1.6 Donor’s Intent: Annual Report

​​​​​The donor’s intent, as expressed in the will or trust, controls how a parish, school, or other recipient may use the gift. Failure to follow the donor’s intent can result in being required to refund the gift, so it is critically important to strictly follow that intent. Types of Gifts

A parish's or school's annual report to the archdiocese should account differently for designated/restricted gifts than it does for undesignated/unrestricted gifts.


A donor may give a cash bequest to a parish and designate/restrict that it be used only for tuition assistance. Gifts to a parish for a specific purpose (e.g., a building fund or sports program) are considered designated/restricted and are not assessed. Similarly, all gifts to a school are considered designated/restricted. Designated/restricted gifts are not subject to the usual assessment by the archdiocese because the full amount of the gift must be used according to the donor's intent and cannot be used for a general budget. See Unrestricted or Undesignated Donations to a Parish, Restricted or Designated Donations and Funds, and "Archdiocesan Assessment and Special Collections" under Banking Relationship.

​Also see the two entries for "Restricted Gift Documents" in the Record Retention Sche​dule, sorted by ​​​category and record type.


Alternatively, the donor's gift would be considered undesignated/unrestricted if the will or trust provides the gift generally to the parish without indicating a specific use. Generally gifts to a parish without a specific purpose are considered undesignat​ed/unrestricted gifts and are treated as ordinary parish income and accordingly are assessed at the regular archdiocesan assessment percentage. See Section for detail on assessments.

​Substantial gifts shall be deposited in the parish's or school's Investment Portfolio​ account, consistent with the requirement that all amounts in excess of three months' operating expenses shall be transferred to the location's Investment Pool account (see Banking Relationship).

​If the gifts are designated/restricted, they must be segregated from the parish's or school's other Investment Pool accounts because they require special oversight to insure their use in compliance with the donor's expressed intent. See Restricted or Designated Donations and Funds​.​