Step-by-step chart on processing of bequests

Bequests - Step by Step ChartApproved byDate CompletedNotes
Develop board policies on the acceptance and use of unrestricted bequests and designated/restricted bequests. Board of Directors
Develop plain-language sample will wording for prospects and advisors. Legal Counsel Consider including sample "power to vary" language regarding restricted bequests and endowments.
Once approved by legal counsel, print and file the sample will wording in your readiness binder, to send on request to prospects and professional advisors. Ensure you are capable of rapidly emailing, faxing, mailing, or hand-delivering it in hard-copy form. Include it in your gift planning brochure.
Develop procedures to be used when prospects and advisors call seeking information about bequests. See telephone call from lawyer checklist (above).
When you are notified about an impending bequest by the estate executor/executrix, set up hard-copy estate files.
Notify your organization's legal counsel.
Confirm the bequest amount and the expected timing of the receipt of the gift.
Set up a calendar reminder system in order to track the bequest.
Develop an estate file checklist to ensure that all required estate documentation is obtained (for example, copy of will, releases, estate accounts, etc.), reviewed properly, and handled promptly. This also helps ensure that all estate distributions have been received, acknowledged, and receipted in a timely way.
On receipt of the gift, acknowledge receipt and that the gift will be used in accordance with the donor's wishes. Acknowledge the gift to the family of the donor, directly or through the executor/executrix.
Issue a tax receipt when applicable.
Last modified: Monday, 4 February 2013, 9:43 AM