A Brief Guide to the Law of Mission Investing for U.S. Foundations

by Mark R. Kramer; Anne Stetson

Oct 1, 2008

U.S foundations have considerable freedom to invest their assets in ways that further their missions, even at greater risk or lower financial return. The legal framework that governs the investment of foundation assets is both complex and ambiguous, however, with the result that many foundation leaders and investment advisors are unclear about what is legally permissible. Anne Stetson and Mark Kramer of FSG have prepared two reports, in consultation with nationally-recognized legal experts and senior foundation officers, analyzing the federal tax and state fiduciary laws as they apply to US foundations. In addition to legal analysis, the reports provide practical recommendations as to how foundations can best navigate these laws in making mission-related or program-related investments. A Brief Guide to the Law of Mission Investing for U.S. Foundations is a short 18 page booklet, suitable for foundation staff and boards, as well as their advisors, explaining in non-technical language the factors foundations must consider in making mission investments.

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