Different ways you can leave a gift to your favourite charity

Leicester Hospitals Charity receives gifts left to us in people’s wills when they want to support the work that we do to make a difference to local people, to improve the facilities and care for our patients, visitors and staff. Here, specialist wills and probate solicitor, Andrew Hitchon from Leicestershire based Bray & Bray Solicitors, describes the ways that a gift can be left to charity in a will, including ways which may even provide a tax benefit to the others you’re leaving gifts to in your will.

There are lots about wills that many people don’t know.  If you don’t have one, you could be forgiven for thinking that all that goes into it is a definitive ‘who gets what’ in relation to your property and money.  

However, there are different ways of leaving assets to others in a will, including:

1.    Gifting a set amount

If you have a set amount in mind to give to a certain charity, then it’s entirely possible to set aside this money in your will.  Some people who gift Leicester Hospitals Charity money in their will like to know the value of their money, in terms of what it can do to help the charity and patients like them, or their families.  

From giving an amount that would enable Leicester Hospitals Charity to revamp a side room, to fund extra staff training, to buy a vital piece of innovative equipment, every little helps towards making a charity like theirs work better for those who need their services. 

2.    Gifting a percentage

Gifting a percentage can relate to money or assets.  For example, you could have a set amount in mind to leave to family and friends, then gift a percentage of whatever is left to a charity.

Similarly, you can give a percentage of your estate, whatever it may include – from houses to cars, motorbikes to boats and even the sale of jewellery.

3.    Gifting items

You can leave almost anything to a charity, when it comes to gifting items. Whether it’s clothing or other household items.  If we can’t use it, we can attempt to sell it, which will help us to raise vital funds.  

4.    Gift over of assets

Some people are left in a position where there is no-one left to leave their assets to, particularly if a beneficiary dies before them. In this case, it can be nice for you to know that your assets will be going to somewhere that you would want them to go to, a charity close to your heart for example; this can be referred to as a gift over provision.

5.    Gifting everything

Some people don’t have anyone that they want to or could leave their assets to.  In this case, if you weren’t to stipulate anyone or anywhere in your will, it would be left up to the law to decide what happened to your assets (this is called intestacy rules).  If you want your estate to go to someone/somewhere specific, you must make a will to ensure your wishes are fulfilled.

Inheritance tax savings when leaving a gift to charity

Whether you leave a gift of an item, an amount or a percentage to charity in your will, there are ways that this can benefit your other beneficiaries.

If you leave more than 10% of your estate to a charity, the rate of Inheritance Tax will decrease.  

The value of what you are leaving to charity could also be taken off of the value of your estate, so that it isn’t taken into account when Inheritance Tax is calculated.

Leaving a gift in your will to Leicester Hospitals Charity

Legacies left in wills, no matter how big or small have a transformational impact. They can change things for the better, buy new equipment or make an environment just that little bit more welcoming.

By leaving a gift in your will to Leicester Hospitals Charity you are helping to ensure that our local hospitals in Leicester are able to make a difference to patients – including the people around you, your family, friends and neighbours, whenever they may need professional medical help.

About the author

Andrew Hitchon is a solicitor who specialises in all aspects of law relating to wills, trusts and probate.  A Partner, Andrew works for regional law firm Bray & Bray Solicitors (www.braybray.co.uk), which has four offices across Leicestershire.