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Bequests – Benefit your Family and Scouting with a Will

A will makes a statement about what matters most in your life. By making a will, you ensure that your intentions are clearly expressed, and that they will be followed by those administering your estate. You should decide who will get your estate — after all, you’re the one that worked so hard for it. Unfortunately, many Americans do not make a will, and therefore let their state decide how to distribute their assets.

After providing for family, friends, and others, many supporters of Scouting also include a meaningful gift to their local council to continue their lifetime support.

Gifts in a will can be:

  • Specific bequests of property
  • A stated dollar amount
  • A percentage of the estate
  • A gift of the residual (what’s left after all other provisions of your will have been satisfied), or
  • A contingent gift (taking effect only if other will provisions cannot be satisfied)

Of course, most of the charitable trusts that can be created during your lifetime can also be created in your will for the benefit of family, friends and charities.

Charitable bequests are a great way to provide for Scouting without giving up the assets during your lifetime. When the gift is distributed from your estate, your estate will receive an estate tax charitable deduction for the amount of your gift. Your gift may be a general purpose gift for Scouting or, of course, you can specify how the Council should use your gift.

It is very important that your bequest be correctly stated in your will. The Greater New York Councils will be happy to provide you and your legal adviser with suggested terminology to ensure that your wishes are fulfilled. You should also consider sharing your plans with your local council, especially if your gift is to be used for a specific purpose by the council.

This information will be confidential (unless you specify otherwise), and you will have the assurance that the use of your gift will be understood and agreed to by your local council.

Also, if you share your plans with your local council, they will have the opportunity to thank you now for your thoughtfulness and generosity to Scouting.

You may be eligible either for recognition by the local council or for national recognition from the Boy Scouts of America.

A bequest intended for the Greater New York Councils should be made to the Greater New York Councils, Boy Scouts of America.

These are intended for the general purposes of the Greater New York Councils and are of very special benefit because funds from undesignated gifts allow maximum flexibility in meeting the GNYC’s greatest needs. Undesignated bequests will be directed at the discretion of the Scout Executive/CEO in consultation with the Board of Directors.

Many donors wish to support special interests or programs through their bequests. If the bequest specifically states a designated use, it is recommended that the specified purposes be described as broadly as possible in the donor’s will. The Scout Executive/CEO can be consulted before a proposal to establish a designated bequest is made. Donors are encouraged to designate bequests to the Endowment Trust Fund

A donor should consult his or her attorney or tax advisor regarding any planned gift intentions.

Recommended form of bequest:

“I give, bequeath and devise (percentage or dollar amount) to the Endowment Trust Fund of the Greater New York Councils, Boy Scouts of America, New York, N.Y.”

The Greater New York Councils and the Endowment Trust Fund are tax exempt under Internal Revenue Service Code section 501 (c) (3) and are not classified as private foundations. Your bequest is deductible against federal estate tax to the fullest extent allowed by law.

For more information about Bequests, please contact Bob Madsen, CFO & Director of Support Services, at (212) 651-3075 or via e-mail atbob.madsen@scouting.org