Ways to Give FAQs

Why do I have to include my wish to leave a charitable gift in my will?

To ensure that the charity receives the gift, you must state your intention in your will. Without a will, you have no control over your assets after death and your property and finances will be settled according to provincial laws-regardless of your intent. A well-prepared, up-to-date will is essential to ensure your future gift is exactly what you want it to be. Learn more about preparing a will.

What if I don’t have an estate?

“Estate” is simply a term used to describe any property, money or personal belongings that you have at the time of your death. Most people have some assets when they die, even though they may not have a great deal of wealth. It’s also important to remember that there is no such thing as an insignificant gift. Anyone can arrange to leave a charitable gift from his or her estate, no matter how large or small.

How do I leave a gift for an organization?

There are many ways to leave a charitable gift, the most common being through a will. Some people specify a certain dollar amount, while others leave a percentage of their estate or any assets that would be left over after they have provided for their families. You can also leave property, life insurance, charitable remainder trusts, or other kinds of gifts. Learn about all the types of planned gifts.

How do I leave a gift in memory of a person or for a specified purpose?

A charitable gift is a meaningful way of recognizing someone who has made a difference in your life. You may also want to give to a specific cause like research or a new building. These kinds of memorial gifts can be arranged in your Will. You should specify that the gift be given in memory of a particular person or for a specific use.

Do I tell the charity I've left a gift?

Many charities like to know of planned gifts so they can recognize your generosity. They can tell you about specific opportunities for giving and also assure you that your wishes can be fulfilled. We encourage you to let the organization know, however, the decision is yours to make.

Can I leave a gift to charity without taking away from my loved ones?

Absolutely. There are many ways to fulfill your charitable goals while still providing for your family and other loved ones. Many vehicles for planned giving, such as life insurance, allow you to leave a variety of gifts to both a charity and family members, all the while providing tax benefits to you.