Making Wills and Leaving Bequests

Charities are attempting to stay engaged with people throughout their lives in order to maintain one of their major sources of funding – bequests (leaving money to charity in a will).  

The website, Include a Charity, estimates that more than 10,000 bequests are left to Australian charities each year and says that bequests are often responsible for keeping charities operating.  

Research group Givewell found that bequest fundraising accounted for 18 percent of charity income in Australia last year.  

However, it is estimated that around 40 percent of Australians have not even made a will.  

Anyone over the age of 18 of sound mind, memory and understanding can make a will and, although wills can be drawn up by anyone, they must meet strict conditions or may not be valid.  

A will can deal with all kinds of property including real estate, personal property such as jewelry, cars, boats, bank accounts and shares, and insurance and superannuation policies unless a beneficiary is named in the policy.  

Legal advice should be sought from your local solicitor to ensure that your best interests are protected.  

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