A will or a living trust is the cornerstone for an orderly and prudent plan to carry out our intentions for family and charitable beneficiaries at the end of life. For many of us, a will or trust may be the only document required to accomplish this. To assure that individual circumstances and family needs are taken into account in writing this important document, it is wise to obtain the advice of a trusted attorney or other legal counsel.
The language typically used in establishing charitable gifts through bequests in a will or trust is not complicated. Here are examples of how you can indicate a general or unrestricted gift to Thomas Aquinas College in your will:
- Bequest of a specific amount
"I give, devise, and bequeath $_____ to Thomas Aquinas College, Federal Tax ID # 94-1698615. Thomas Aquinas College may be contacted by mail at 10,000 Ojai Road, Santa Paula, CA 93060 or by telephone at 800-634-9797.”
- Bequest of the remainder of an estate
"I give, devise, and bequeath to Thomas Aquinas College, Federal Tax ID # 94-1698615, all [or state the fraction or percentage] of the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate, both real and personal. Thomas Aquinas College may be contacted by mail at 10,000 Ojai Road, Santa Paula, CA 93060 or by telephone at 800-634-9797.”
A bequest can also be designated for a specific purpose — such as for the College’s Endowment or for the financial aid fund. This is not difficult to include in a will or a trust, but it should be written or adapted by your attorney to fit your specific situation. Or you may contact the College’s Director of Gift Planning for suggestions or assistance.
A previously written will or trust need not be entirely re-written to establish a charitable gift. A Codicil is a simple document that amends a will during life.
A living (“revocable”) trust similarly may be modified anytime during life by attaching an amendment to it. Alternatively, a trust may be restated, and this may be the preferred method, especially when several changes are desired.
Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, California has tax-exempt status and is a charitable institution under 501(c) 3 of the Internal Revenue Code.
The College’s Federal Identification Number is 94-1698615.
“In our classroom discussions, we are not only given free rein to speak, but free rein to think. No question is off the table. Anything that can bring a more full understanding of the truth is welcomed and encouraged.”
– Christopher Sebastian (’13)