Invest in Your Community Through a Bequest in Your Will
It’s never too early to plan! In a large national survey of those who reported they had included a charity in their Will, 43% were younger than 55 years old. Forty-nine is the average age at which a charitable bequest is first included in a Will / estate plan. A Will is much more than a legal document. It is an opportunity to responsibly provide for the security of your loved ones and it can be a lasting legacy of your commitment to your community.
What is a Bequest? A bequest is a section of your Will or living trust that directs a gift from your estate to the person or institution of our choice after you die. It is often the simplest way for a donor to make a significant, lasting gift. Bequests may be used to provide gifts of money, real estate, stock, or even works of art or jewelry.
After the needs of a spouse, children, and other loved ones have been addressed, many individuals find it satisfying to know that a portion of their resources will go toward a common good.
Benefits of Giving through a Will and Bequests
- Your assets remain in your control during your lifetime.
- You can modify your bequest if your circumstances change.
- You can direct your bequest to a particular purpose (be sure to check with The Greater PineBelt Community Foundation to make sure your gift can be used as intended).
- There is no upper limit on the estate tax deductions that can be taken for charitable bequests.
- A properly drafted will allows you to minimize death taxes and other costs.
- You can have the satisfaction now of knowing that your bequest will support your community and favorite charities in the way you intended.
Why have a Will? A Will allows you to make choices regarding who will receive the assets you have accumulated during your lifetime. Without a Will, your assets will be distributed according to laws established by the State of Mississippi, without regard for personal wishes or the needs of loved ones.
How to make a Will. Making a Will is neither difficult nor expensive. However, every situation is different, and it is important that each person work with their own professional advisor (attorney, an accountant, a trust officer, or a life insurance agent) to structure your estate to best meet your personal objectives. If you do not have a professional advisor, ask a friend or relative to recommend one, call your local bar association, or call The Greater PineBelt Community Foundation.
Update an Existing Will – An outdated Will can often be as bad as dying without a Will. Common events in life, such as births, deaths, marriages, divorces, and retirements, can trigger the need to update your Will. Also, changes in tax law, an inheritance received, assets purchased or sold can impact your estate plan.
Make a Charitable Gift in your Will – A bequest, a gift in a Will, is an opportunity to make a difference in the quality of life in your community. Many people discover that a bequest is a satisfying way to provide for future resources for their favorite charitable organization. When creating or updating your Will, consider including one of the many charitable funds at the PineBelt Foundation as a beneficiary or establish your own Fund through your Will. A bequest can be a percentage of your estate or a stated dollar amount. Some people prefer to gift a percentage of the “residue” or what remains after paying all inheritances, debts, and costs.
What do I do? You can establish or add to your named Fund in your Will or trust through a bequest. Your gift can be used to accomplish almost any charitable goal:
- Create an endowment for your favorite charity, church or school
- Establish a scholarship fund
- Leave a family legacy — which allows children to continue their involvement in charitable grant making.
Suggested Will Language for a Bequest
(a) I give and bequeath the sum of $_______ (describe gift) to The Greater PineBelt Community Foundation, subject to its governing instruments, as amended from time to time.
(b) This gift shall be devoted to the general charitable educational, religious and scientific purpose of The Greater PineBelt Community Foundation as set forth in its governing instrument, as amended from time to time. More specifically, this gift is for addition to _____________________________________“The Fund Name.”
(a) This gift shall be devoted to the support of ___________________________ until such time as such charitable use, in the judgment of the Board of Directors of The Greater PineBelt Community Foundation shall have become unnecessary, undesirable, impracticable, incapable of fulfillment, or inconsistent with the charitable needs of the PineBelt area. In any of such events, this gift shall be devoted to the general charitable, educational, religious and scientific purposes of The Greater PineBelt Community Foundation as set forth in its governing instruments, as amended from time to time.
(b) The fund hereby created is established in memory of ___________________________, and shall be known as the “ ___________________________ Fund.” Any recipient of benefits from this fund shall be advised that the source of such benefits is the ___________________________Fund.”
For more information please contact your Professional Advisor or Theresa Erickson, Executive Director at contact@PineBeltFoundation.org or call 601.583.6180