Legacy Planning

Wills & Bequest

Wills & Bequest

Bequest are Gifts that are made as part of a will or trust

Dear Friends, as you contemplate the future and how to best manage your resources, remember that estate planning, including drafting a will, is a key aspect of leaving a lasting impact.

This could be the most significant gift you will be able to transfer to your family. That's where our dedicated legacy planning team steps in. They're ready to guide you through the complexities of preparing, planning, and managing your assets effectively. For those with young ones, this includes arrangements for their guardianship.

Your legacy planning isn't just about the here and now; it reaches into the future, allowing your contributions to support your mission of protecting what rightfully belongs to you and your family.

Estate and Will Creation

Your will is a crucial legal tool that ensures your estate is managed according to your wishes, providing security for your family and loved ones. Without a will, the state where your assets are located will dictate how your estate is handled. To kickstart your estate planning, we suggest using our Personal Data Sheet.

The consequences of not having a will include:

Your assets will be distributed without your input.

The inheritance distribution will be determined by the court.

Guardianship of your minor children will be decided by the court.

Part of the will-making process involves appointing an executor. This person is responsible for executing your wishes as outlined in your will. To better understand the executor's role, we encourage you to use our Executor Information Brochure.

We recognize, however, that a will might not suit everyone's needs. For instance, a will does not not avoid probate when you pass, and must be validated by the probate court before it can be enforced. We suggest exploring Living Trusts as an alternative to make the most informed choice for your situation.

If you're considering drafting your Last Will and Testament, we invite you to thoughtfully include a contribution to your foundation or a foundation/charity/cause of your choosing, doing so, you are extending your legacy of giving beyond your lifetime. This allows you full control over your assets while you're alive (most importantly too, right, while you're still living?) and ensures a meaningful gift from your estate afterward.

Below, you'll find suggested wording to include in your Last Will and Testament.

Sample Bequest Language

  • Fixed Dollar Amount:

    I give, devise, and bequeath {Charity of Choice, COC}, a nonprofit organization located in {location} or its lawful successor, the sum of $_______ to be used as determined by its Board of Directors in furthering its mission and supporting its goals.

  • Percentage of Estate Language:

    I give, devise, and bequeath _____% to , a nonprofit organization located in {location. Town, State} or its lawful successor to be used as determined by its Board of Directors in furthering its mission and supporting its goals.

  • Residual Bequest Language:

    After all your estate expenses and specific bequests have been distributed, the remaining or residual funds are given to {Charity of Choice, COC}.

    I give, devise, and bequeath to {Charity of Choice, COC}, a nonprofit organization located in {location, Town, State} or its lawful successor, all (or a certain percentage) of the rest, residue and remainder of my estate, both real and personal to be used as determined by its Board of Directors in furthering its mission and supporting its goals.

  • Contingent Bequest Language:

    You may designate {Charity of Choice, COC} as a contingent beneficiary if one or more of your specific bequest wishes cannot be fulfilled.

    If(insert name) is not living at the time of my demise, I give and devise to {Charity of Choice, COC} a nonprofit organization located in {location, Town, State,} or its lawful successor, the sum of $______ (or all or a percentage of the residue of my estate) to be used as determined by its Board of Directors in furthering its mission and supporting its goals.

  • Include This Paragraph with Your Specific Bequest Language:

    {Charity of Choice, COC} is a nonprofit organization and is qualified for tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. {COC} tax identification number is 00-0000000.


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