“The desire to promote the welfare of others, expressed especially by the generous donation of money to good causes.”

The support of philanthropy is key to our corporate social responsibility policy and we will always work with our clients to encourage and explain the varied ways in which they can support charitable purposes. The three key ways in which our clients provide for charity through their Wills are as follows:

Will legacies

Many testators who wish to benefit charities in their wills will do so by leaving legacies to specific pre-existing charitable institutions or by leaving a share (or even the whole) of their residue to them. We can help you identify and define the appropriate charitable entity to name within the Will as this is not always straightforward. Clients often have a purpose in mind but not a charitable institution. Even where a client knows which charity they intend to benefit it can be complicated as, for example, charities may have merged or renamed and large national charities often have sub-charities or regional variations.

The tax treatment of estates making charitable provision can be complicated due to the “grossing up” provisions, the tax status of international charities and the “reduced rate of inheritance tax” (36% instead of 40%) which may be available if 10% of the testator’s assets pass to charity. We can help you take maximum advantage of the available reliefs.

Charitable Foundations

Our clients often like the idea of establishing their own charitable institution to leave an ongoing legacy in their name. In limited circumstances it may be appropriate to establish a charitable vehicle during a client’s lifetime, but this is increasingly rare due to the minimum income level required by the Charity Commission and the administrative burden of running a charity.

As such we will usually look at establishing a charitable institution on death and to do this the trust wording to govern the charity must be included in the Will itself. We can assist you in drafting these provisions to ensure that they fall within the definition of “charity” and will be acceptable to the Charity Commission.

The Charities Aid Foundation

The Charities Aid Foundation is a registered UK charity which provides services and assistance to charities and their donors, as well as promoting donation to charity generally. It operates a Charity Account scheme and Charitable Trust Scheme which can provide an effective and low cost route to achieving your charitable intentions.