Sometimes, Albertans choose an interesting estate planning alternative in leaving some of their assets to charities. They have different options for doing this. Some bequest specific dollar amounts to named charities. Others choose to designate a percentage of the estate as a charitable donation.
Charities could be directly or indirectly named as the beneficiaries of wills. Some programs offered by banks allow people to make donations to gift funds. The funds have specific advisory rights that include the following:
- Selecting the fund’s name
- Allocating the value of the yearly grants from the gift fund to donate to charities
- Naming the successors who will manage the gift fund
It also offers the opportunity to arrange for beneficiaries to make ongoing donations in the name of the testator or the family’s name.
Different banks and private non-bank entities in Canada offer charitable gift programs or private giving foundations with varying minimum amounts required. For example, some require $25,000 as a minimum, and others require $10,000. These donor-advised funds are flexible, allowing beneficiaries to continue gifting funds to charities in memory of the testator.
Other options include creating donor-advised funds directly with charitable organizations. Furthermore, the charities might allow the donor or the estate to make recommendations related to the donated funds’ applications. These recommendations are usually non-binding.
Everyone should have a will, and although it need not be overly complicated, the options to personalize a will are endless. A will ensures that loved ones are provided for and that the testator’s legacy is protected. To achieve this, some Alberta residents are creative in structuring their wills and other estate planning documents.