What is a bequest and how do I leave one in my Will?

A bequest is a gift passed to an organisation or individual as part of your Will, a legal document that outlines your wishes when you pass away. It is the legacy you leave behind when you pass away, and can have a lasting impact on the lives of others.

How does a bequest work? 

All your financial assets, savings, properties, belongings, assets (like stocks and bonds) form what is known as your estate. When you pass away you can choose how you would like to divide up your estate with the executor of your Will. A person or organisation you choose to leave a bequest to is known as a beneficiary. 

What are the different types of bequests?

There are four main types of bequests you can leave in your Will:

1)  Residual: This is the remainder of your estate after you leave gifts to loved ones

2)  Percentage or fractional: This is a gift expressed as a percentage of your estate

3)  Pecuniary: This is a specific gift that can be money, property, stocks or shares

4)  Whole estate: This comprises your entire estate

Who can I leave a bequest to?

You can choose to leave a bequest to a person or organisation like ACRF, or multiple people and organisations, depending on how you would like to divide up our estate. When making the decision of who, or what organisation, to leave a bequest to, it is important to consider the legacy you would like to pass on to future generations. 

Safeguarding your loved ones, progressing the causes you’re passionate about, and leaving a lasting impact on the lives of others, are all important considerations to make when leaving a bequest. 

To learn more about leaving a bequest or gift in your will, please visit our Gifts in Will page, where you can download a free Bequest Info Booklet.

How do I leave a bequest?

A bequest will need to be written into your Will. If you have a pre-existing Will, you will need to update the Will wording to include a bequest to a loved one or organisation.

If you don’t have a Will, but are looking for an efficient and affordable way to create a simple Will that reflects your wishes, book in to attend one of ACRF’s annual Wills Days. For just $75 for an individual or $100 for a couple, a legal professional will provide a one-on-one consultation to draft a simple Will. There is no obligation to leave a gift to ACRF in your Will, though should you choose to do so we would be very humbled. All fees will go toward backing brilliant cancer research. For more information and to book, visit our Wills Days 2022 page. 

Why make a bequest to a charity? 

There are plenty of reasons you might choose to leave a bequest to a charity in your Will. A bequest to charity is a powerful way to leave behind a lasting impact in your honour or in the memory of a loved one. It’s the last gift you’ll give to the people and causes who need it most. 

While leaving a gift to family and friends has the obvious benefit of ensuring your loved ones are looked after when you pass away, leaving a bequest to a charity in your Will can positively impact the lives of people you’ve never met, who you may share a common bond with. For example, many people who leave a bequest to ACRF have a lived experience of cancer or have a loved one who has been impacted or died from the disease.

Related reading: How to Leave a Gift to Charity in Your Will

How do I leave a bequest to ACRF?  

ACRF is humbled by all our amazing bequestors who choose to leave a gift to ACRF in their Will. Our bequestors have backed brilliant cancer research, helping to give scientists access to the cutting edge technology that drives innovation, ultimately saving millions of lives.

At ACRF we have a Planned Giving Manager dedicated to ensuring your wishes are reflected in your will when you pass away. Please contact Lee Christian, by phoning 1300 884 988 ​or emailing bequest@acrf.com.au to learn more.

Alison’s Story

Regular charity donations

“I support the ACRF in honour of my Mum, Jean, who died from a brain tumour (Glioblastoma) in June 2011. I miss Mum every day.

I miss her even more after giving birth to twin daughters a couple of years ago. My mum was a wonderful grandmother – she would have been so excited at the thought of having twin grandchildren!

While I know it is a cliche, Mum was the glue that held my family together. Her loss was devastating.

She fought through two other cancers – breast cancer and melanoma – before passing from Glioblastoma. While Mum’s medical teams were skilled and dedicated, her treatment options for brain cancer were limited, and the very poor prognosis for this disease had not changed for a long time.

I work in health care, and know that more research is desperately needed and it is vitally important for medical researchers to be able to plan their work, with the security of regular financial input from donors. Every amount, no matter how modest, adds up to providing that security to researchers.

When I investigated various options for donating, the ACRF stood out – they seemed so dedicated to putting each dollar to the best possible use, and clearly had a great deal of respect for donations. After being a monthly giver for a short time, I decided to include the ACRF in my will.

The image I have included was taken on my wedding day in May 2010, 5 months before Mum became unwell.”

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