How to Make a Gift in Your Will

A gift in your will, also known as a bequest, allows you to make an extraordinary gift and continue the charitable support you have given during your lifetime. It also allows for tax savings on your estate.

Step 1. Getting Started Talk to Edmonton Community Foundation (ECF) and your professional advisor about your wishes. Let them know that you want to name ECF in your will. ECF can suggest wording to simplify your will, allow you to easily make changes to your choices later, and to accurately reflect your wishes so they are clearly understood.

Step 2. Define your Objective

There are many ways to make a difference. You can add to a fund that already exists or create and name your own fund (with gifts of $10,000 or more). Your fund can be a “community fund” that allows ECF’s Board to respond to emerging and priority charitable needs and programs. Or it might support a field of interest (like the arts, children, or animals), or support organizations that are particularly important to you, or a combination of any or all of these. If you are not sure which idea fits best, ECF can help you define how you can make a difference.

Step 3. Choose a Method

There are many ways to leave a gift in your will. You may leave a percentage of your estate after all your other gifts are made (called “residue”). You can leave a specific dollar amount, or property like shares, mutual funds, or real estate, all chosen to fit well within your overall estate plans.

Step 4. Make an Agreement

ECF will help you to create a short agreement. This agreement will set out in writing exactly how your fund will operate, where and to whom the money will be dispersed, along with any other details. It will clearly state that it will not impose any obligation on you to make a gift in your will, but does assure that ECF understands your goals.