Leave a Legacy: Planning for Perpetuity

Perpetuity. It’s a term we think about a lot. When GVLT commits to holding a conservation easement, we do so in perpetuity. Each conservation easement we place, trail we build, and acre of land we protect leaves a legacy that will last far beyond any of our lifetimes. Our commitment to protecting the land is forever. That’s a long time.

While none of us will live forever, we can leave a legacy that lasts far beyond our years. Making a gift to GVLT through your estate will ensure the trails and open land you cherish today will continue to be enjoyed by your children and grandchildren, your neighbors and friends.

There are many ways to give through your estate, many of which cost nothing in your lifetime. Some gifts, such as charitable gift annuities, can even provide you with income.

Let’s explore one of the easiest and most popular giving vehicles available – the bequest. Charitable bequests are simple and versatile gifts made through your will or living trust. Typically, a donor will designate a specific dollar amount or a percentage of the assets of their estate. Other popular gifts include real estate or tangible personal property.

Bequests are revocable, meaning you can always change the terms of your gift depending on the circumstances of your life at the time. For example, John and Jane Smith had no children and loved the Main Street to the Mountains trail system. In 2012, they decided to include a bequest of 50% of their estate to GVLT in their will. Three years later they adopted twins and wanted to ensure their children were financially secure well into the future. They simply met with their attorney and revised their will, changing their charitable designation to 25%.

All it takes to make a charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leaves a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate to charity. A bequest to GVLT is fully deductible for estate tax purposes.

Do you want more information on the various ways to leave a legacy of trails and open land in the Gallatin Valley? Contact Matt Parsons at (406) 587-8404 x103 or matt@gvlt.org. We can provide you with sample bequest language depending on your philanthropic goals.

*GVLT does not give legal or financial advice. Please seek the advice of a financial or legal advisor before making any financial decisions.