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Parents Encouraged to Leave Charitable Legacies

Legacy giving appears to becoming more popular in the UK, with a recent survey revealing that 9% of adults under the age of 45 actively encourage their parents to leave money to charity in their wills.

The study, by charity coalition Remember A Charity, also found that 5% of adults in this age group would have no objection to their parents leaving their whole estate to charity. Only 45% said they would be happy if their parents left their whole estate to them and nothing at all to charity.

Supporting Legacy Giving

The research revealed that on average, adults under 45 would support their parents’ decision to leave a charitable bequest up to the value of 16% of the overall estate, once the family’s future had been secured.
Commenting on the findings, the Director at Remember A Charity, Rob Cope, said:
“Our report today highlights that a whole generation of British adults are encouraging their parent’s generation to leave a real legacy by doing some social good when they prepare their Will.
“There are obviously financial challenges facing all generations in today’s Britain. However, that the average adult would be happy for 16% of their family estate to go to good causes only serves to highlight how giving we are as a nation. Legacy donations are the lifeblood of so many vital services that are provided by charities all over the UK. We hope that this trend continues and more people decide to have their say on the world they want to leave behind in this way.”

Concerns over Financial Future

However, despite the encouragement from their children to leave money to charity, the over-65s report having their own financial concerns.
Around 53% still apparently worry about whether their finances are sufficient to sustain them in retirement. One of the biggest areas of concern appears to be potential care costs, with the majority attributing this to the lack of clarity over the Government’s social care policy. In addition, 64% say they are concerned about their children’s financial future.
These worries mean that despite their children promoting legacy giving, the over-65s only expect to be able to leave around 5% of their estate to charity after they have made sufficient provision for their family.

Bequest Left to University

Leaving a charitable bequest in your will is an effective way of supporting a cause close to your heart. The range of charities that people choose to support in their wills is vast, from medical charities, to charities supporting children or animals, and even educational establishments.
Earlier this year, it was revealed that a long-time supporter of Edinburgh’s Napier University had left a bequest of £750,000 to the university in his will.
Dr Ian Tomlin died in January 2016 but had supported the university throughout his lifetime, making donations and setting up scholarships.
He specified that the money left in his will should be used to support “the study, teaching and performance of classical music”.
“He was the epitome of the philanthropist, a man who was driven by the desire to promote the welfare of others, and we are delighted his influence will continue to be felt here as his legacy gift supports the careers of the promising classical musicians of the future,” commented Nicholas Ashton, Co-Programme Leader for BMus (Hons) at Edinburgh Napier.

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