Common questions about legacies

What basic information do I need to include when leaving a gift in my Will to Life?

The most important bits of information to include are our name, address and registered charity number:

Life 2009

4 Jephson Court

Tancred Close

Leamington Spa

CV31 3RZ

Registered Charity in England and Wales (1128355), and Scotland (SC041329).

What is an executor?

The executors of your Will are the people who administer it when you are gone. They tell the beneficiaries about their gifts, and settle any debts you owe. They also deal with Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the UK and the Office of the Revenue Commissioners in Ireland where necessary.

You need to be able to trust them, and they need to be prepared to take on this responsibility.

You can name a family member (including someone benefiting from your Will) or a friend.

Alternatively, you can use a professional like an accountant or solicitor (who will normally require payment from your estate).  Or, if you prefer, a combination of relatives, friends and professionals.

What kind of gifts can I leave?

  • Pecuniary gifts are specified sums of money. If you would like a gift of money to keep its value over the years, it is a sensible idea to ask your solicitor to index-link it.
  • Residuary gifts are made from whatever is left over once gifts of money and specific items have been distributed.  You can give the whole of the residue to a person or a charity like the Life, or a portion of it.
  • Specific gifts are things, such as a house, a painting or a ring.

Your solicitor will be able to explain this in more detail.

Do I need to be wealthy to leave a gift in my Will?

Not at all.  Our services are sometimes paid for by a gift, or a number of smaller gifts, that people leave in their Will. But gifts in Wills also pay for lots of other things too – keeping our houses fit for purpose, new beds and mattresses, baby monitors, Life Skills training at our houses such as kitchen & cooking skills; as well as training a Helpline volunteer to give emotional support and counselling.

So whatever the size of your gift – large or small – you can be sure we will use it to help save lives.

Including a gift to Life in your Will doesn’t affect how much money you have to provide for old age. Your estate is calculated based on whatever is left after you die. And if you arrange your gift to Life as a residuary gift, it will only be paid out after all the other gifts you leave to your family or friends have been made.

Just 1% can make a huge difference to our work.

How do I change or add to an existing Will?

If you want to make a change or an addition to an existing Will, you can usually do this easily with a codicil.  But it is very important to use a solicitor to do this to make sure you aren’t inadvertently upsetting any other arrangements in your Will.

Under no circumstances should you write on an existing Will itself. You should keep any codicil you make with your existing Will but not physically attached to it.

Download an example codicil form

Do I need to tell Life if I’m leaving a gift?

You don’t have to tell us what you decide – we respect your right to privacy.  But if you would like to tell us that would be wonderful.  We would love to say thank you, and to keep you informed and inspired by our work.

What if I change my mind?

Circumstances change; we understand that. If you would like to change your mind about leaving a gift in your Will you can do so.

Any other questions?

Contact Margaret Kirby on – 07818 646403


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