Your Questions About Gifts in a Will Answered

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Barnabas Foundation answers your questions about gifts in a will.

Without a proper plan in place to give gifts in a will, we can just as easily bury the potential impact of our God-given resources. Having an up-to-date will, on the other hand, ensures our God-given resources are put to good use, long after we’ve gone to be with the Lord. We proactively support the needs of our loved ones and further the impact of our favorite Kingdom causes simply by planning ahead.

Q&As – Gifts in a Will

Q: What are a few benefits of having a will?

A: A will (or trust) is your final act of stewardship and care. Through it, you can take care of your loved ones, model a legacy of generosity and ensure your favorite ministries continue to make a difference well beyond your lifetime.

Additionally, having a will may help you to:

• Save taxes

• Minimize family disputes

• Provide for a family member with special needs

• Transfer a family farm or business

• Avoid probate expenses and delay

For many Christians, a will is an expression of their belief that God owns everything and wants us to manage the resources entrusted to us. Almost no other action you take will speak as powerfully to future generations about what matters most to you!

Q: Should I have my will updated by my attorney if it doesn’t mention digital assets?

A: Yes, it would be a good idea to update your will if it doesn’t mention digital assets. Digital assets include information stored on laptops, tablets, hard drives, smart phones, or online accounts. Additionally, it may also include your email account, social media, or blog.

Q: Are there any life milestones when I should consider updating my will?

A: People commonly update their will at important life occasions, like having a child or losing a loved one. But there are other subtle transitions that have implications on your estate plans.

• Family: Have you or your children recently married, remarried, or divorced? Have you gained family members through birth, adoption, or marriage?

• Charitable Relationships: Have you become more involved in a particular ministry?

• Time: Has it been more than three years since you last reviewed your will?

Q: Do my assets avoid probate if I have a will?

A: A will does not provide a probate avoidance guarantee. The better solution for making certain your assets will not be subject to probate court intervention is to place them in a living trust. A living trust is simply a trust you create while you’re alive, rather than one that is created at the time of your passing under the terms of your will.

Q: What is the difference between a living will and a last will?

A: A living will provides direction to your loved ones on how to handle your health care directions, in the event you are medically unable to express your wishes. A last will, however, is primarily used to designate how your assets will be distributed to your loved ones and favorite charities when you go to be with the Lord.

Planned giving has a great impact. To learn more about making a gift in your will and other smart and powerful giving options, contact Bill Buikema, Jr., at (708) 342-8114, or email Bill at, or contact the Barnabas Foundation Toll-free: (888) 448-3040.