Your legacy can help build a future of hope in Madagascar
A legacy to Money for Madagascar is a powerful expression of your commitment to building a brighter future for the people and wildlife of Madagascar.
Deciding who to remember in your Will is a very personal decision. After considering the needs of your loved ones, if you feel able to leave a gift to charity, please consider leaving a legacy to Money for Madagascar.
Your gift could help communities in Madagascar to overcome poverty and protect their unique natural heritage for decades to come.
Could transform the life prospects of generations of children in an isolated rural community by enabling their school to participate in our Education for Life programme. This integrated programme improves the life chances of impoverished children by improving their health, nutrition and quality of education.
Could help secure the future for endangered lemur species by planting 10,000 indigenous trees in an innovative tropical reforestation programme linking protected areas with wildlife corridors around the Andasibe National Park.
Could save a vulnerable or abandoned child from destitution, providing them with 6 years of safe residential care and education.
Could provide safe drinking water to a rural community protecting hundreds of families from waterbourne diseases, which are the biggest killer in Madagascar.
Your Will is your chance to take care of everything that’s important to you. Family and loved ones obviously always come first.
Many people believe that writing a Will is complicated, but in fact it’s relatively straightforward. When making or updating your Will you should always seek professional advice.
Here are a few important things you should consider before you speak to a professional advisor.
1. What is the value of your estate?
One of the most important things you will have to work out is the value of your estate.
This means calculating the value of everything you own, including:
Personal possessions, including sentimental objects
Any investments you’ve made
Your business, if you own or part-own one
After adding up the value of all your assets, you need to minus any existing debts. These might include mortgages, loans, overdrafts and credit or extended purchase agreements.
You need to check with your pension provider(s) to see if your pension can be included as an asset – different pension plans have different rules. For more information on this visit www.pensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk
2. How do you want your estate to be distributed?
Gifts can be anything you own and can take the form of specific items, cash amounts, or a percentage of your estate. By making your Will you can make provisions for the age at which young beneficiaries receive their gift or share of your estate, as well as providing for beneficiaries with health or care needs. You may choose to use your Will to pass on business interests: for instance you could leave shares in the family company to a son or daughter who has come into the business. This is a very tax-efficient way to pass on your assets.
You can also specify family and friends who you wish to pass on personal items to.
For more information on choosing how to split your estate, visit www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk
3. Who has made a difference to your life?
Has a charity helped you or somebody you love? Which causes are important to you?
After you’ve looked after your family and friends, you may wish to leave a gift to a charity close to your heart.
The donation can be as small or large as you like.
Make a note of their charity name, address and registered charity number to give to your professional advisor.
We can provide you with these details for our member charities, or you can find details for all registered charities in the UK and Wales on the Charity Commission website.
Details for charities in Scotland can be found on the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator.
4. Who do you wish to be executors and guardians?
Another important consideration when making a Will is the appointment of your executors – the people who will deal with your estate in the event of your death – as well as guardians for your children.
Ideally, executors should be business-minded family or friends or could be professional advisors.
Read our guidance for executors.
5. How do you want to store your Will?
Once written, most professional advisors will offer to store your Will for you so that the Will is not lost.
It may also be worth considering storing your Will with the Her Majesty’s Court Service. When your Will is complete, you can also register it with a number of commercial organisations that operate Will registration schemes.
We understand that administering the estate of a loved one can be difficult, but it can also be rewarding. As an executor or personal representative (in cases where there is no Will), you are responsible for ensuring that someone’s last wishes are fulfilled.
If you’re an executor, we can answer some of your questions in order to help you understand your duties.
What is my role?
As an executor, your responsibilities include:
Ensuring that all the property owned by the deceased person is kept safe and secure, as soon as possible after their death.
Ensuring that any property or items of value are adequately insured.
Collecting and, if appropriate, convert (sell) any assets due to the deceased person’s estate
Paying any outstanding taxes and debts (out of the deceased person’s estate)
Distributing the estate to those who are entitled to it under either the terms of the Will or intestacy
Delivering up your grant of probate if required to by a court.
What should I do if a charity is mentioned in the Will?
If there is a named charity beneficiary in a Will, you should contact their legacy team to discuss the gift with them. Each charity will have different preferences on how they would like to receive legacy payments, so it is best to speak with them directly about this.
What details does the charity need?
In your role as executor, the named charity would find it useful to be informed of the following:
1. Details of the person who has passed away:
Last known address and any other recent addresses
Date of Will
Date of death
Whether the deceased was a lifetime supporter of the charity (this
would enable them to put a stop to any future promotional mailings)
2. Some beneficiaries are entitled to a copy of the Will. For example, if they receive a share of the residue of the estate (what is left after any specific gifts have been made), you should provide such beneficiaries with this and also a list of the late benefactor’s assets and liabilities at the date of death.
3. You should also provide them with reasonable updates about the estate administration. This will allow them to understand the nature and contents of the estate and approve any key steps which you take during the administration, for example agreeing the sale price of a property. Such consultation can avoid problems arising in the future.
How is the tax calculated?
UK registered charities are exempt from paying Inheritance Tax, Capital Gains Tax and Income Tax.
If the estate contains a mixture of charitable and non-chartable beneficiaries, you should check the percentage of Inheritance Tax payable. If 10% or more of the net estate is left to charitable beneficiaries, a lower amount of Inheritance Tax (36%) may be payable on the non-charitable parts of the estate. You can check whether or not this lower rate will apply at Gov.uk.
Who can I contact for further guidance?
If you are acting as an executor, you can find a solicitor in your local area who will be able to help answer any further questions you have.
To find out more about making a Will and leaving a gift to charity, please take a look at the links below:
Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners
The Law Society
The Law Society Scotland
The Law Society of Northern Ireland
Institute of Legacy Management
Institute of Professional Willwriters
Certainty National Will Register
The Charity Commission for England and Wales
OSCR – Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator
The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland
Co-op Legal Services