Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-1-2010

Abstract

When Leona Helmsley, the New York hotel and real estate heiress, died in August 2007, she left a will naming both human and canine beneficiaries. However, one of the unnamed beneficiaries of this estate plan is surely the body of scholars interested in studying the role of philanthropy in the United States. By directing that an estimated $8 billion be used for the benefit of dogs, Mrs. Helmsley brought into high relief policy issues regarding the appropriateness of the unlimited charitable deduction, particularly as it applies to perpetual private foundations.