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Gifts of Stocks and Securities


Thank you for your interest in giving to Vanderbilt University through a donation of securities. Gifts of appreciated securities often provide significant tax benefit. Contributions of appreciated stock held for more than a year are generally deductible at market value, regardless of what you paid for them. Accordingly, the capital gains tax is avoided. Please consult with your tax advisors for specific tax advice when giving securities.

Donating Securities

Securities Held in Brokerage or Bank Accounts

If your securities are held in a brokerage account, most brokers will require written instructions authorizing the transfer to Vanderbilt. Our online giving website will create a letter of authorization for you to sign and send to your broker. This letter contains important information your broker will need, including information about Vanderbilt's brokerage account. After receiving the letter, your broker will be able to transfer the securities directly to Vanderbilt’s account. Some brokers require this letter to be medallion signature guaranteed by an eligible guarantor institution (bank, stock brokers, savings and loan associations and credit unions) with membership in an approved signature guarantee and medallion program. Please check with your broker for special requirements. The online form also provides a means to alert Vanderbilt of your intended gift, which will expedite gift processing.

Securities Held in Certificate Form

If your securities are held in certificate form, a transfer of the physical stock certificate will be required. Please send the certificate(s) without any endorsement or assignment via registered mail to the Associate Director of Gift Accounting:

Terry Garmon
Director of Gift Processing
Vanderbilt University
PMB 407727
2301 Vanderbilt Place
Nashville, TN 37240-7727

Under separate cover via regular mail, send a stock power for each certificate, signed exactly as the name(s) appear(s) on each of the certificates, and dated. The stock power should transfer the securities to Vanderbilt University (tax ID 62-0476822) and be signature guaranteed by a bank or brokerage house. For your convenience, we have provided a stock power form here.

Mutual Funds

Mutual fund units cannot be electronically transferred via DTC. Vanderbilt may or may not be able to accept the gift based on the fund company and/or where the mutual funds are held. If you wish to make a gift of mutual funds, please contact Gift Processing at (615) 875-1155 to discuss further.

Closely Held or Restricted Stock

Closely held or restricted stock may be accepted by Vanderbilt under certain conditions. Please contact Gift Processing at (615) 875-1155 for information about making a gift of closely held stock or other forms of stock ownership. Special rules may apply to gifts of closely held or restricted stock.

Gift Valuation


The gift date for securities sent to us via DTC is the date the securities are deposited into our Morgan Stanley  Smith Barney (MSSB) account. The gift date for physical securities is determined by the postmark on the envelope used to mail the securities. For hand delivery of securities, the gift date is the date the securities are turned over to the designated university representative. The gift date for mutual fund units is the date they are deposited into a Vanderbilt account. The gift date for closely held or restricted stock is the date it is transferred into Vanderbilt's name.


The value of marketable securities is calculated by averaging the high and low quoted selling prices for the stock as of the gift valuation date. The value of a bond gift is calculated by averaging the bid and ask prices for the bond as of the gift valuation date. The value of a mutual fund gift is calculated using the Net Asset Value (NAV) for the fund as of the gift valuation date. The gift value of closely held or restricted stock will be valued at the fair market value placed on the stock by a qualified independent appraiser.
(Source: IRS Publication 561)

Acknowledgement and Gift Processing

When the university receives a gift of securities and matches that gift to the donor, Vanderbilt will send a gift receipt verifying the nature of the gift, the gift valuation date and the gift valuation amount. Neither gains nor losses realized by the institution’s sale of the securities after their receipt, nor brokerage fees or other expenses of the transactions are included in the gift value. If the stock transfer is related to an open pledge, the pledge balance will be reduced by the gift value of the stock gift. Generally, the gift value of a stock transfer will be directed to the donor designated purpose.