Last updated on December 28th, 2020 at 08:35 pm
What are the benefits of donating to charity in your last will and testament?
Around £10 billion is given to UK charities a year, with approximately a third of that figure coming from legacy gifting, according to the Charities Aid Foundation.
Many people opt to leave a portion of their estate to charity, known as a legacy gift, in their last will and testament. A legacy gift helps make a lasting difference to your chosen charity, or charities, helping future generations after your death. A legacy gift is also tax beneficial.
If you are thinking of leaving a legacy gift or want to learn more about writing your last will and testament, then read on. Graysons’ team of will writing solicitors in Sheffield and Chesterfield answer some of the most frequently asked questions about will writing and legacy gifts.
How does a legacy gift in my last will and testament reduce inheritance tax?
Any monies that you leave to charity in your last will and testament will not count towards the total taxable value of your estate, therefore helping to reduce the amount of inheritance tax payable and maximising the impact of your support for your chosen charity or charities. Indeed, the rate of inheritance tax can be reduced from the standard rate of 40 percent to 36 percent if more than 10 percent of the deceased’s net estate has been left to charity. It is important to note that it must be a UK registered charity to qualify. Graysons’ team of will writing solicitors in Sheffield and Chesterfield will be able to advise you on how a legacy gift will help lower any inheritance tax payable.
How many charities can I gift to in my legal will?
You can choose to leave a legacy gift to as many charities as you wish in your last will and testament. Many people choose to leave a legacy gift to the charities that they have supported throughout their lifetime. If you wish, you can opt to state in your last will and testament how the funds should be used; however, it is important that it is not too restrictive for the charity. The wills and trusts team at Graysons will be able to offer advice on how to leave a legacy gift in your last will and testament, ensuring that the wording used accurately reflects your wishes.
How do I leave a legacy gift in my last will and testament?
You must clearly state in your last will and testament that you wish to leave a legacy gift as well as what specifically you would like to leave. Some people opt to leave a set amount of money, other’s gift a property or asset to charity, while others choose to leave a percentage of their estate. Some people name a specific charity or charities in their last will and testament, while others leave it to their Executors or Trustees to decide. If you are naming a specific charity or charities, you will need to accurately include their name, address, and registered charity number.
It is important to remember that your legal will must still make reasonable provision for any financial dependents you may have. If it does not, your last will and testament may be contested. If you are considering leaving a legacy gift in your last will and testament, the best course of action is to seek advice from an expert wills and trust solicitor, such as Graysons’ team of will writing solicitors in Sheffield and Chesterfield.
What other things should I consider when writing my last will and testament?
A legacy gift is just one of several things you should consider when writing your last will and testament.
You will also want to carefully consider who you would like to benefit from your estate in your legal will. This includes immediate family members, such as a spouse or any children, along with friends. Some people opt to divide up their assets equally. Others choose to leave specific items – such as property, a car, jewellery, or works of art – to individual beneficiaries.
Other things to consider in your legal will are any exclusion clauses, people who ordinarily would be able to make a claim against your estate, such as an ex-spouse, as well as who should look after your children aged under 18, if any.
Finally, you should also name an Executor or executors, someone who has the legal authority to manage the affairs of your estate and ensure your wishes in your last will and testament are carried out.
To ensure peace of mind that your wishes in your last will and testament will be adhered to, you should seek out the services of an experienced will lawyer, such as Graysons’ team of will writers and attorneys.
How can I ensure my legacy gift in my legal will is valid?
The best way to ensure your legacy gift is valid in your last will and testament is to seek out the services of an expert will lawyer, such as Graysons’ team of will writing solicitors in Sheffield and Chesterfield. They will be able to accurately write your will to ensure your wishes are honoured and that the will is unlikely to be contested. There are few key things to note to ensure your last will and testament is legal.
- Your last will and testament must be in writing
- It must be signed by two witnesses in the presence of the person making the will
- You must be 18 years or over
- You must have mental capacity
- The will must be dated.
What happens if I want to change my legacy gift in my last will and testament?
If circumstances change, then you can change your legal will. However, you cannot do this by amending the original will. The only way to modify your last will and testament is by making a codicil to the will or by having a new will drafted. If you want to change or amend your will, then you should contact a will writing expert, such as Graysons’ team of will writing solicitors in Sheffield and Chesterfield.
Where should I keep my legal will?
It is important that you store your legal will safely. You should advise your Executors as well as other people that you trust, such as your children or spouse, where you will is placed so that they know where to find it when needed. Remember, if your last will and testament is damaged, or cannot be found, then your wishes might not be carried out, and your estate will be managed according to the rules of intestacy or even an earlier will. Graysons not only offer a will writing service but can also safely store your will as well.
How can Graysons’ team of will writing solicitors in Sheffield and Chesterfield help?
It is important to note, that if you do not have a last will and testament, then your desire to leave a legacy gift will not be honoured as your estate will be distributed according to the rules of intestacy. An expert wills solicitor will ensure your last will and testament is accurately drafted in accordance with the legal requirements. If you need help with will writing and estate planning, then contact Graysons today.