Is it a good idea to have provisions in my will for charitable bequests?
Absolutely. Once you have given prayerful consideration to unique and individual needs of your family and other loved ones, and have provided for them as the Lord has directed you, you can feel the freedom and joy of funding God's work in the world. It's tremendously satisfying to know that the ministries and charities you choose to support are in a position to provide services and meet needs that you can't possibly fulfill, and to continue doing so long after your death. It's worth adding that this is an excellent area in which to start "givin' while you're livin' so you're knowin' where it's goin'."
There are a number of creative tools and techniques available to help you accomplish this goal. They include the CRT (charitable remainder trust), CRAT (charitable remainder annuity trust), CRUT (charitable remainder unitrust), CGA (charitable gift annuity) and CLT (charitable lead trust).
Also, be sure to check with your professional legal and tax advisors to ensure compliance with current tax provisions and avoid any other problems or challenges. Kingdom Advisors is a network of Christian professional planners that can assist you in this area. Many charitable organizations also have development and planning offices that work with donors. Some, including Focus on the Family, provide will and estate planning services at no charge. Many provide annuity payments to you in exchange for significant contributions.
If you need further information and guidance, please don't hesitate to give our Gift and Estate Planning staff a call. They would be happy to listen to your concerns and assist you with some practical suggestions. You can contact them Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Mountain time at (800) 782-8227.
Transferring Wealth to Your Heirs: Ron Blue offers a simple approach to making decisions about wealth transfer and estate planning.
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