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Leaving your money to charity

Matt Sale is the general manager of retail customers for Public Trust. He is on a mission to ensure each New Zealander has their last wishes heard. Here, Matt reveals what you need to do if you wish to leave assets or money to a charity.

Leaving your money to charity

I want to leave a gift to charity when I die – how do 
I do it?

The easiest way to do this is to make 
a bequest in your Will. A bequest is the 
act of gifting personal property or assets to a cause that you feel passionate 
about supporting.

What do I need?

To make a gift in your Will, you’ll first need to choose a charity. If you want, you can pick more than one. You might choose a charity you’ve supported for years or an organisation you’ve always wanted to support. Once you’ve decided, make sure you get their full name and registered charity number for your Will.

How do I decide what to give?

It is entirely up to you whether you give a fixed sum or a percentage of your estate. You might like to have a think about what the charity would benefit from most. Something else that’s important to consider is, how you’ve provided for your dependents in your Will, these are people who rely on you financially. Bequests can be overturned if someone can prove they have a right to be provided for, or haven’t been adequately provided for in your Will.

Is there anything else 
I should do?

It’s a good idea to share your wishes with family and friends so they can support you when the time comes. You might also like to contact your chosen charity and ask them for more information on leaving a bequest. This way you can find out what they really need and how your gift will be used to make a difference.

Who can I contact for more information?

Most legal professionals should be in a position to offer advice or you can talk to Public Trust to make sure your wishes are captured in a Will. If you’ve already got a Will, you may not need to write a new one, it may be as simple as updating your existing one.

Find out more at publictrust.co.nz or call 0800 371 471

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