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Bequest Language

pdficon_large.gif Printable Bequest Language

 

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to the Boston Athenaeum a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events, or a percentage of your estate.

A bequest—a gift in your will—is simple and convenient. You can create a legacy through a bequest. Your bequest can be a specific dollar amount or a percentage of your estate. You can designate your bequest for general use, or you can restrict its use.

Examples of various types of bequests

Specific bequests are used to make a gift of a specific dollar amount or specific asset (such as securities or personal property).

Residuary bequests are used to give all or a portion of the remainder of your estate after payment of expenses and any specific amounts designated to other beneficiaries.

Including the Boston Athenaeum

The following includes several examples of suggested bequests to benefit the Boston Athenaeum. Each individual situation is unique; therefore, these examples include only some of the possible gift opportunities. We encourage you to discuss your intentions with us at the Boston Athenaeum to ensure that your wishes will be properly followed and recognized. Because a will is an important legal document, you should seek an attorney's help. To assist you with this important process, we offer suggested wording below.

Percentage of estate for unrestricted purposes

"I give to the Boston Athenaeum, a not-for-profit organization (tax id # 04-2104852) located at 10½ Beacon Street, Boston, MA, 02108, _____ percent (%) of my estate for its general purposes.”

Specific amount for unrestricted purposes

"I give to the Boston Athenaeum, a not-for-profit organization (tax id # 04-2104852) located at 10½ Beacon Street, Boston, MA, the sum of $_________ in cash (or ________ shares of ______________ stock) to be used for its general purposes."

Specific amount for specific purposes

"I give to the Boston Athenaeum, a not-for-profit organization (tax id # 04-2104852) located at 10½ Beacon Street, Boston, MA, the sum of $________ in cash or in-kind (or ________ shares of ___________ stock) to be used for ______________________________________ at the Boston Athenaeum. If changed circumstances should at some future time make it impractical to continue administering the gift for the purpose designated, then the Boston Athenaeum board of trustees may redesignate the purpose—provided the terms adhere as closely as possible to my original intent."

Designating the purpose of a bequest

Unrestricted: The most useful type of bequest is unrestricted, allowing the funds to be allocated wherever the need is greatest and taking into account that changes may necessitate a use that cannot be anticipated at the time of the gift.

Restricted: You may designate your bequest to support a special program or purpose that reflects your interests. If the bequest is restricted to a specific purpose, it is important that the following wording be added at the end of the provision. This will ensure that, in the remote possibility a specified purpose may cease to need funds in the future, an alternate use for the bequest may be determined.

“If changed circumstances should at some future time make it impractical to continue administering the gift for the purpose designated, then the Boston Athenaeum board of trustees may redesignate the purpose—provided the terms adhere as closely as possible to my original intent."

For information please contact:
Robert L. West
Chief Development Officer
Boston Athenaeum
10½ Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02108
617-720-7682
west@bostonathenaeum.org

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