In a recent study, 97% of Australians thought having a will was important. It is surprising then that only 52% of Australians have one.
A will is a legal document that clearly defines how you want your estate to be distributed after you die. Through a will, you can provide for your family and loved ones, and you can also leave a gift to a cause that you believe in. This gift is called a bequest.
How do I leave a bequest in my will?
A bequest is a personal decision and can be made with or without assistance from your chosen cause(s). There are a number of different bequests you can make but most are made with specific wording in your will.
Types of bequests:
If you are concerned about your loved ones, this option may suit you best. It states that your cause receives the remainder of your estate after your loved ones are considered.
A predetermined percentage is allocated to your chosen cause. This can be a good way to set your priorities in your will.
As the percentage bequest refers to a predetermined percentage, you can choose to set a specific cash value to be donated to your chosen cause.
You can choose a particular item or asset to be left to your favourite cause. These items can include cars, property, land, art and jewellery.
Life insurance and superannuation policies
Some charities can accept life insurance and superannuation policies depending on your personal provider.
How do I word a bequest in my will?
The wording of your bequest can determine whether or not its valid. So its always best to get professional legal advice at this stage. Depending on your situation, the wording may end up looking something like:
“I give [details of bequest] to [cause name] of [cause address] for the specific purpose of [specific area of work].”
Who can I leave a bequest to?
You can leave a bequest to any charitable cause. You can contact the administration or legal arms of your chosen cause to give you some further information.