Charity Doesn't Begin At Home
Brian and Hilary with charity gifts
Brian and Hilary are keen supporters of several charities and they want to ensure that they have a will which includes a gift to their chosen charity.
They have two adult children and decided it would be a good idea to leave everything to each other initially and only on second death they should split the remaining estate into 3 equal parts, with each child having one third, and the last third going equally to two of their favourite charities.
Five years after Brian passed away, Hilary passed away after a short illness. Their two children were named as executors of the estate.
Hilary had wanted her jewellery to be given to her daughter but forgot to mention it when her will was drafted.
When they mentioned this to the charities one charity said that would be fine, but the other charity said no, and that if the daughter wanted the jewellery she would have to pay the estate for it. This is because the charity was sharing the residue of the estate and wanted to maximise their legacy and allowing a gift that wasn’t in the will would not maximise their legacy.
Both charities were keen to receive their legacy as soon as possible and kept in close contact with the children to find out not only when they should expect their legacy, but also to have detailed accounts made up to see exactly how much money had come in, and how much money had also been paid out to ensure that the estate was being managed efficiently.
All this could be avoided if instead of providing for the charities out of the residue of the estate, a specific monetary gift was made to the charities, or some or all of the residue was gifted into a discretionary trust with the children and the charities included as potential beneficiaries.