Leaving a Legacy
Support children and youth in the Himalayas by organizing a gift in your will or estate. Leaving a legacy is a fantastic way to extend a lifetime of support. As you plan your family’s future, you are passing on a message of humanitarianism, a message about the cause you cherish. Including TRAS as a beneficiary in your will, life insurance policy or by donating mutual funds leaves a legacy of a lifetime, and provides future generations with the means to build a brighter life.
Leaving a legacy to TRAS can be done in several ways, by giving:
- A bequest in your will
- Life insurance
Leaving a bequest in your will
A bequest can be made in the form of cash or property by including TRAS as a beneficiary in your will. It is simple to arrange and can significantly reduce the tax paid by your estate. As you may make changes to your will at any time, you retain full control of your gift and can easily alter or add a codicil to the will to meet changing circumstances.
You may also make a residual bequest to TRAS. A residual bequest is a gift of all or a fraction of whatever remains after all debts, taxes, expenses and other bequests are paid.
A will is a valuable legal document to have – it will safeguard your family’s financial future and ensure that your assets are distributed according to your exact wishes. Without a will, your estate will be distributed according to the government and you may subject your family to increased financial and personal costs. Please consider seeking legal advice to prepare your will.
You can name TRAS as the owner and beneficiary of a new or existing life insurance policy. Often the gift will exceed the premiums you will have paid, allowing you to bestow a much larger gift than you might otherwise be able to give.
Transferring ownership of an existing policy to TRAS entitles you to a tax credit for the cash surrender value. Premium payments also qualify for a tax credit.
If you own publicly listed shares or mutual funds, you can receive extra tax savings by donating them to TRAS. By donating shares directly to a registered charity, any accumulated capital gain associated with the securities are now totally tax exempt. This means that a gift of shares to a registered charity could both save you taxes and benefit the charity.
You may also give a gift of an RRSP or RRIF. To do so, simply name TRAS as the beneficiary of the RRSP or RRIF. The funds will avoid probate and although the RRSP/RRIF funds will be taxed as income in your estate, a charitable tax receipt for the amount of the distribution will offset any taxes arising from the funds. It is easy to change the beneficiary of your RRSP/RRIF – simply call your financial advisor and ask for a form or for instructions on how to make the change.
Questions and Answers
Q: What should I say in my bequest?
A: If you would like to provide support for the future work of TRAS by including a charitable bequest in your will, the following language may be helpful:
“I give to the Trans Himalayan Aid Society (hereafter referred to as TRAS) currently located at 720 – 999 West Broadway, Vancouver, B.C., V5Z 1K5, the sum of $_______ (or ________% of my estate) to be used in support of its general charitable purposes.”
Q: Will there be any tax advantages if I leave a gift in my will to TRAS?
A: When you make a donation through your will, the tax credit can be claimed up to 100% of net income in the year of death. (Ordinarily, tax credits for charitable donations can be claimed up to 75% of net income.) If the amount of your bequest exceeds your income for that year, credit for the excess can be applied up to 100% of the previous year’s income.
* The information contained in this section is general in nature and is not a substitute for independent legal advice! We recommend you seek independent counsel before making a planned gift.