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Remembering REAL in Your Will

mallard familyIf you would like to ensure that the work of your local environmental  organization, REAL, can continue to benefit future generations, a bequest is a simple option.  A bequest is a powerful statement of your  beliefs that will cost you nothing in  your lifetime.

You just need to make a simple stipulation in your will expressing  your wishes.  This can be done the next  time you review your will with your lawyer, who can help you find right words  to ensure the money goes exactly where you intended.

A bequest does not need to be all or nothing.  There are various possibilities for donating  a portion of your estate to REAL after you have looked after your friends and  family.  Our thanks to colleague Green  Community, Peterborough Greenup, for the examples below:


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Specific Amount Request: The donor designate REAL to receive a specific dollar amount. The estate receives a charitable estate tax deduction for the whole amount.

Sample language:  “I  give to REAL, a Canadian registered charity, in Smiths Falls, Ontario,   twenty-five  percent (25%) of my estate for its general endowment or for other general  purposes.”

lily padsPercentage of the Estate  Residue.  After making specific bequests to family and  friends, the donor’s estate is divided among others or charities, that may  include REAL.

Sample  language:  “All the rest, residue  and remainder of my estate, of whatsoever kind and wheresoever situate, shall  be distributed as follows fifty percent (50%) to REAL, a Canadian registered  charity, in Smiths Falls, Ontario, for its general purposes and fifty percent  (50%) to My Church, in Smiths Falls, Ontario.”

wildflowersResidue of the Estate for a  Specific Purpose:  The donor,  after providing several specific bequests to family and friends for specific  amounts, leaves 100 percent of the residue to REAL for a designated purpose.

Sample language:   “All the rest, residue and  remainder of my estate, of whatsoever kind and wheresoever situate, shall be  distributed to REAL, a Canadian registered charity, in Smiths Falls, Ontario,  to be used to support the Well Aware Program.”

Bequest of Retirement Plan  Assets. All retirement  plan programs require a primary beneficiary be named when the plan is  established. This beneficiary can be changed at any time and may include a  charity. Therefore, you might consider naming REAL as a beneficiary of all or a  portion of your retirement plan assets.

fall roadYou are not  obligated to inform REAL of your bequest plans. But if you choose to share your  plans with us, we can either recognize your generosity now or  respect your  wishes to remain anonymous.

Note: The above is  intended to provide general information, not professional advice. Please  consult your own lawyer or other professional advisors.