Your Scouting Legacy
To establish your Scouting legacy you can make a charitable bequest in your will, make a gift of an IRA or a life insurance policy. Estate planning with these vehicles reduces the tax liability for your heirs. In addition, your final gift to Scouting also cements your Scouting legacy within your family ensuring your descendants know the important role Scouting should still continue to play in their lives.
Wills and Bequests
A bequest is one of the easiest gifts to make. With the help of an advisor, you simply include language in your will or trust specifying a gift to be made to Boy Scouts of America as part of your estate plan. You can establish your legacy, and it remains revocable at any time during your life. For donors with taxable estates, charitable bequests are completely tax deductible when distributed. There are many types of bequests you can consider, including:
- General—A designated amount of money, such as “$10,000.”
- Specific—A certain item, such as “my 100 shares of IBM stock,” “my home at 123 Main Street,” “my original Norman Rockwell painting,” etc.
- Percentage—A designated percentage of your estate, such as “10 percent.” This helps protect against inflation, reducing the value of your bequest.
- Residuary—Gives Scouting all or a percentage of anything left after all general and specific bequests are satisfied.
- Contingent Bequest—Only takes effect if another bequest fails, such as “If my father should predecease me, then this should go to the XYZ Council, BSA.”
Many donors establish “testamentary” charitable trusts in their wills. These are just like the “regular” annuity trusts or unitrusts—the only difference is they are funded or created in your will. Also, for donors who use living trusts, Scouting and other charities can easily be included in those.
If you already have a will and want to make some simple changes, you can do so with a codicil. A codicil is a simple addition or amendment to an existing will. As with wills, codicils involve certain signing formalities and can be revoked or changed during your lifetime. But no matter what your charitable plans, make sure you have a valid will and regularly review it so it meets the changing needs of you and your family.
Gifts of Life Insurance
Do you have insurance policies no longer needed for their original purpose? Do you have a policy:
- providing money for a spouse or children, who no longer need it?
- covering a mortgage on a home or other property that’s now paid off?
- covering educational expenses that no longer exist?
- protecting a business you no longer own or that has other coverage at this point?
ESTATE PLANNING TIP
Donate a new or existing policy to Scouting and your tax deduction is about equal to the policy’s cash surrender value. | It may be beneficial to donate such policies and take the tax deduction. In general, you can also deduct any annual amounts paid to keep the policy in effect.
For more information on how to remember Scouting in your wills or estate plans, contact the Office of Development at Old Hickory Council, 336-760-2900 or email with your questions. You may also have your professional adviser contact us.