How to Leave 10%

How to Leave 10% to important causes you care about

Make a Gift Through Your Will

You can include a gift through your will or living trust to one or more causes your care about. You can also use a codicil to your will or an amendment to your living trust.

For example: I give, devise and bequeath (identify here the specific sum of money, the specific asset or the portion of the residual estate) to ABC Charity, 111 Any Street, Anytown, WA 91111, specifically to support [describe the primary purpose or program that your gift will be supporting, but use general language so that the restriction is not so limited as to prevent the charity from applying the money in the most efficient way.]

If the Board of Trustees of ABC Charity determines that all or part of the gift is no longer needed, or for any reason cannot be used for the stated purpose, then they can determine an alternate designation, giving consideration to the original purposes described above.

Complete a Beneficiary Designation Form

If you desire to include a cause in your estate plan, but don’t wish to revise an existing will or trust, here are two simple, quick and cost-free ways of making a future gift:

1) Make a cause a beneficiary of a bank or brokerage account

A Payable-on-Death (POD) arrangement allows you to name a cause as a beneficiary of your bank or credit union savings account, checking account or CD. A very similar arrangement, called a Transfer-on-Death (TOD) account, allows you to name a charity as a beneficiary of your stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Upon your death, assets in POD and TOD accounts are passed to beneficiaries without going through probate.

2) Make your favorite causes beneficiaries of life insurance, annuities, IRA or Pension Plans

You can name a cause as a beneficiary of your annuity or whole-life, term or employer-provided life insurance policy. Simply submit an updated beneficiary designation form to your life insurance agent or mail it directly to the life insurance company.

Similarly, you can include a cause as a beneficiary of your retirement plan, such as a traditional IRA or 401(k) account, simply by updating the beneficiary designation form, which can be obtained from the plan administrator. Naming charity as beneficiary of your retirement plan eliminates income and estate taxes on that asset, so that upon your death, all of the remaining balance goes to support a worthy cause.

Although forms will differ from one financial institution to the next, you will need the following information:

Beneficiary’s legal name and address: Tax ID number: XX-XXXXXXX

Other Ways to Leave 10

You can also make a gift that provides you with tax savings and financial benefits. Please consult the development office of your favorite cause for information and illustrations on:

  • Life income plans, such as a charitable gift annuity or charitable remainder trust

  • Deeding your home while retaining the right to live there for the rest of your life

  • Trusts that provide a payout to charity for a term of years at the end of which the remaining assets pass to your family at a reduced tax cost

Important Note

Please bear in mind that in providing this information, Leave 10 is not giving professional tax or legal advice. You still need to consult your professional legal and tax advisors about the consequences of this gift to your particular situation. We also encourage you to discuss your philanthropic plans with your family members as appropriate so that they may participate in your decision-making and understand the objectives of your estate giving plans.