N.Y. trust loses – But claim was too late

A state appeals court in New York has ruled that the largest community foundation in the U.S. wrongly directed funds it manages for a charity that aids the poor, The New York Times reported Sept. 22.

But the court also ruled that the 155-year-old Community Service Society of New York waited so long to file its claims against the 76-year-old New York Community Trust that the claims were barred, the Times said.

The case turned on the volatile question of how much discretion community foundations have to redirect a donor’s gift from one charity to another.

Because the court’s ruling dealt so directly with the facts of the case, the Times said, it’s not clear how it will affect the way community foundations throughout the U.S. distribute the $25 billion they control.

The New York Community Trust, with $2 billion in assets and $131 in grants last year, decided in 1971 that the Community Service Society had changed its approach to working with the poor and so should no longer get funds from six trusts that had specifically named it as a recipient.

Both sides are considering an appeal, the Times said.

For full story, go to The New York Times.

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