Bequests: Making Gifts to Mission Through a Will
A bequest in a will is the most commonly used method to make a charitable gift. It can take numerous forms:
- Specific dollar bequest – is for a specific amount of money.
- Specific property bequest - allows a donor to leave a particular piece of real property, whether a home, farm, rental property, land, etc. to the church or charitable beneficiary.
- Percentage bequest - such as a 10% tithe, is often left to the church. This approach leaves room for an estate to grow or shrink while at the same time knowing that all the important persons in your life are cared for.
- Bequest of the residue - of an estate ensures that relatives and friends will be cared for and the portion of the estate which remains – the residue - will go to church or charity.
- Contingent bequest - stipulates that a certain condition must occur prior to distribution to the beneficiary. A contingent bequest is appropriate if you want to name a secondary beneficiary, in case the primary beneficiary does not survive you.
- Codicil - supplement or an addition to a will which allows you to modify your will without going to the expense or trouble to rewrite it. However, your attorney should always draft your codicil. Codicils are easy and effective ways to add charitable bequests to your will.
- Unrestricted bequest - allows your bequest to be used to support the area of mission with the greatest need at that time.
- Restricted bequest - allows you to specify how your bequest will be used. If you choose to restrict your bequest you should always consult with us in advance so we can determine if your wishes can be carried out.
It is important to notify the charitable organization regarding an impending bequest as the charity would like to provide the appropriate legal wording and work with the potential donor to ensure that their future gifts can be used in the manner intended. For more information on a bequest please contact a staff member.