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Your gift changes vulnerable children and adults lives.

If you are thinking about leaving a gift in your will to VSA, then THANK YOU!

Every year we are incredibly humbled that people very generously leave gifts to VSA to enable us to continue our work of changing local peoples lives. We are very grateful for any gift you leave to VSA. All donations will help us continue providing physical, emotional, social, and mental wellbeing support through our residential or outreach support services. 

To help you, we have included the most commonly asked questions below, however if your question is not below or you would like further information about leaving a legacy to VSA, then please e-mail legacy@vsa.org.uk

What ways can I leave a gift to VSA in my will?

There are three different ways you can leave a gift to VSA,:

  • Residuary gift, this means you can leave a percentage or share of your estate. For example, you could leave 12% or 1/6 of your total wealth.
  • Pecuniary gift, this means a lump sum. You might choose to leave a fixed amount of money to VSA, such as £100, £1,000, or £10,000.
  • Specific gift, this means you leave a specified item of value in your will. For example, you might leave antique, jewelry, or shares to us.

Does everyone have to pay Inheritance Tax?

This will depend on the value of your estate. Everyone is eligible for Inheritance Tax (IHT), but there are a few situations in which your estate might not have to pay it. We would always recommend you read the latest guidance on IHT from HMRC https://www.gov.uk/inheritance-tax

Generally speaking, you won't have to pay IHT if:

The value of your estate – that’s the combined value of all your money, property, and possessions – is less than £325,000.

You leave your entire estate to your spouse or civil partner, a charity or a community amateur sports club.

Gifts you give in your lifetime are exempt from IHT, subject to some limits, as long as you continue to live for at least 7 years after you’ve given the gift. If you die sooner than this, IHT may be payable.

You will have to pay some IHT if:

You leave part or all of your estate to your children – including adopted children, foster children or stepchildren – and grandchildren. However, the tax-free threshold rises and in addition to the nil-rate band of £325,000, a residence nil rate band may also be available at the rate in effect at the date of death if the main residence is left to lineal descendants i.e. children or grandchildren. Or you may have to pay IHT if you decide to leave gifts in your Will to any other relatives, friends or non-charitable organisations.

How much is IHT?

Anything above your tax-free threshold is currently taxed at 40% - this means that beneficiaries of your estate will receive £6,000 for every £10,000 over the threshold your estate is worth. Anything you leave to a spouse or civil partner, charity or community amateur sports club isn’t included in this threshold, and as mentioned above, the threshold is higher when you’re leaving money, property or possessions to children or grandchildren.

The rate, tax-free thresholds and other rules around IHT change from time to time, and we strongly recommend you visit the official Government page on IHT for full details.

I have decided to leave a gift in my will to VSA, what do I need to do?

Leaving a gift in your Will to VSA is easier than you might think – just follow the following steps:

  1. Make a note of our charity name, address and registered charity number. Our official name is Aberdeen Association of Social Services (Known as VSA) Charity Number SC012950, and our registered address is 38 Castle Street, Aberdeen, AB11 5YU
  2. Find a solicitor or professional Will writer to write your Will.
  3. Provide your solicitor or Will writer with details of the gift you have chosen to leave and whether or not you would like this restricted for a specific area. At VSA we have Children & Family Services, Carers Services, Education and Learning Services and Adult and Community Services. 

I have an exisiting Will, how do I inculde VSA in it?

If you want to leave a gift to VSA but you’ve already made a Will, then there is a couple of ways you can change it.

  1. Write a new Will

The simplest way is to write a new Will. Once written, any Wills made by that person in the past become void. In fact, most Wills will start by reciting that you’re writing a Will and that you’re revoking previous Wills.

  1. Codicils

The other way is to write a codicil, which is a document used to make changes to an existing Will.

It’s used as a way to make simple amendments like adding a charity, changing a gift amount or adding an executor. This is all quite straightforward but problems can occur if you ever want to cancel the Will in the future.

When you cancel a Will that contains a codicil, the codicil does not get cancelled automatically, so when you write a new Will it can create inconsistencies and legal problems. To avoid this, make sure that any new Will clearly states that you are revoking all Wills and codicils previously made.


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