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I'm slogging my way through the Cliff legislation, and here's one provision which could affect your 2012 taxes if you choose. For information about the rules for QCD's see IRS Publication 590.

This provision, which allows those facing RMD's to direct money to a charity without including it in income and expired after 2011, has been extended through 2013.

Since the legislation came after the tax year was over, there's a special rule for distributions taken in December 2012. You can make a cash contribution rather than the direct transfer from custodian to charity required for this treatment. If you want to take advantage of this for 2012 you have until the end of January to act.

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