Legacy giving made simple.

Research amongst the public often shows that people think that making a Will is complicated and expensive. In fact, the very opposite is true. Making a Will is simple and inexpensive. More importantly, it ensures that your wishes are properly observed when you die. Your estate will be divided as you wish, not as others may assume. Too often, families fall out when specific instructions for the bequeathing of money and goods are unclear. So, for the sake of all concerned, making a Will is a good option.

And, when family and friends have been considered, you can turn your thoughts to leaving a gift to your favourite charity. Legacy income is incredibly important to charities. It is unpredictable as most people do not share the contents of their Will with recipients outside of their families. So, when a notification of a legacy arrives unexpectedly, it is very welcome indeed. It frequently enables the charity to achieve the things they dream of but find hard to fund.

Here is a short list of questions and answers to show you just how simple it is to make sure your Will does what you want.

What is a Will?

A legal document detailing how you wish your possessions to be disposed of after your death.

Why is important to make a Will?

So that you know your estate will be divided as you want it, with bequests going to the people you want to have them. It means that family disputes are avoided at a time when families are grieving.

When should you make your Will?

The usual times to make or review a Will is when significant changes to your life or status occur, such as a marriage or divorce, birth of a child or grandchild, moving house. Any or all of these events make us think about and consider the future.

How do I make my Will?

As I wrote above, research carried out over many years has revealed that people think that making a Will is horribly complicated and expensive. For most people, this just is not true. A simple Will can be drawn up by a local law firm. The easiest way to proceed is to make a list of the people and organisations you wish to benefit and what you would like them to receive. Family and friends usually come first, of course. But then you may want to leave a bequest to a charity that you support. Doing this has two benefits; the first is to ensure that your support costs you nothing today, but means that your support continues into the future. The second benefit is that any Inheritance Tax payable will be reduced by the amount donated to charity.

Where do I keep my Will?

Once it have been completed and signed, you can keep a copy at home and leave one copy with your solicitor as well.

Who should I tell?

It is best to tell members of your family where your Will can be found. If you have left a bequest to your favourite charity(s) they will also be grateful to know of your kindness, but that decision is definitely yours to make.

One final piece of information that you may find useful. Not everyone has a solicitor ‘on tap,’ as it were. You might have employed one to carry out conveyancing when moving house, or to consult on other matters. Will-making is quite a speciality, and almost all law firms have a specialist team working on this area of their business. To find solicitors in your area who specialise in this area, the Law Society has a very useful location service that you can access online or by telephoning them on 0202 7320 5757 (Monday to Friday 9 am-5 pm). All calls are charged at the local rate.

Find a Solicitor - The Law Society

How will we use your legacy

If you do decide to leave a gift in your Will to us, it may go to a variety of projects. For example, conservation work at either of our reserves, Sculthorpe Moor in North Norfolk or Shapwick Moor in Somerset. We carry out practical research, working with landowners to site and monitor nest boxes for birds of prey and owls and legacy gifts in the past have enabled this work to be increased. We often take the opportunity presented by an unexpected sum of money to carry out a ‘dream’ project, something that we really wanted to do, but could not afford. Several of the hides at Sculthorpe are examples of ‘dreams come true’.

Whatever you pledge to us, there will always be one pledge to you. To use your gift wisely to benefit birds of prey and owls.

If you have any questions about leaving a legacy bequest to the Hawk and Owl Trust, please call to speak to a member of the fundraising team, or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Legacy Leaflet

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