Including a gift in your will is easy, but it may be a way of giving that you’re unfamiliar with.
If you’re considering leaving a gift in your will to Michael Garron Hospital, we know that you might have some questions. To help, we’re sharing some frequently asked questions. If you can’t find the answer to your question below or if you’d prefer to connect with someone directly, please contact us as we would be happy to speak with you.
- What is a will?
A will is about your life and legacy. It helps to create a map of how you want to be remembered. It’s a way of making sure you have a plan for how you will take care of loved ones and the causes you cared about in your lifetime.
Simply put, a will is a legal document that states your wishes about what should happen with your estate, which includes assets like a house or a bank account, after your death. If you have children, you can name a guardian to care for them.
While you’re not legally required to have a will, if you die without one, the laws in your province or territory where you live will determine how your estate is divided.
- Who can leave a gift in their will?
Anyone can include a gift to charity in their will. Often, those who leave a gift in their will have given modestly throughout in their lifetime—and they’ll make the gift of a lifetime through their will.
“I’d always assumed that only the wealthy made charitable gifts in their will. But I discovered I can provide for my kids and still leave a gift as my thank you to the place that has meant so much to me all my life.” – Gary Grant, legacy donor and volunteer
- What kinds of gifts can I leave in my will?
Including a gift to charity is easy and flexible and can be made according to your needs. You can also change your will at any time. Most people opt to make one of two types of gifts: residual or cash bequest.
A residual gift allows you to to designate whatever remains of your estate after all debts, taxes, expenses, and all other bequests to your beneficiaries (including family and friends) have been fulfilled. You may prefer this option if you’re unsure of the total size of your estate or you’re interested in dividing your total assets among a few beneficiaries.
With a cash bequest, you set a specific amount to donate. You may prefer this option if you know the impact you want to make and the size of the gift that works for you.
No matter where you are in your estate planning, we’re here to answer any questions you may have. For help with your planned giving questions, please feel free to contact us.
- How will my gift be used by the hospital?
The community we serve in East Toronto will continue to grow exponentially. Advances to medicine and science will compel us to update our practices and training. As we encounter the unknown - like we did during the COVID-19 pandemic - and are called upon to develop a response to keep our community safe, your help will always be needed.
A gift in your will ensures that Michael Garron Hospital is able to respond to the changing nature of healthcare in our community for generations to come. The health system you experience today, will not be the system of the future.
- How can I leave a gift in my will and provide for my loved ones?
A good way to think about your estate is to divide it up into percentages, like a pie. You can leave a slice to each of your loved ones, such as your children or your grandchildren, another relative or member of your chosen family, and then any remaining slices to the causes you choose.
We know that leaving a gift in your will is a deeply personal decision. You don’t have to choose between your loved ones and your favourite causes when creating your will. After you have discussed your estate plans with your family, we recommend you consult with a legal professional, and any other advisors.
There are just a few pieces of information you need to include a gift in your will to Michael Garron Hospital:
Legal Name: Toronto East Health Network Foundation operating as Michael Garron Hospital Foundation
Charitable Registration Number: 11925 9448 RR0001
This applies if you’re making a will for the first time, or updating your will.
To make the process as easy as possible, we have proposed language in our sample will wording document.
- What if I already have a will?
Estate planning is a continuous process. As your life changes, and as legislation evolves, so may your estate plans. It is a good idea to review your will with an estate professional at regular intervals to ensure it continues to meet your needs and those of your loved ones.
We’ve provided examples of the legal language which can be used to include Michael Garron Hospital in your estate plans. Please feel free to download our sample will wording to help when you next update your will.
- Do I have to let you know about my decision?
You’re under no obligation to share that you’ve left a gift in your will with us. If you do choose to communicate that you’ve included Michael Garron Hospital in your will by completing a Will acknowledgment form it gives us the opportunity to thank you personally for your commitment.
We celebrate donors who include a gift for the hospital in their will by inviting them to be a part of the Joseph H. Harris Legacy Circle, a community of caring members.
Legacy Circle members enjoy the following benefits:
- Invitations to events, including Behind the Scenes tours and an annual luncheon.
- Special mailings, including our annual report.
- Recognition on a group plaque in the hospital – naming for you or a loved one – or anonymity if that is your preference.
Plus, when you share your giving intentions with us, you’ll be kept informed of the incredible progress donors are making possible, so you feel even more connected to the cause you care about.