Wills & Trusts FAQ

Some states allow an individual to compose a will. If it's properly witnessed and signed, many Probate Courts will accept such a will. However, a will is a very important legal document, and it's wise to employ the expertise of a qualified attorney.
No. That would be a conflict of interest and we encourage you to seek the advice of an attorney you choose. However, the National Wildlife Federation can suggest language you might use in leaving a bequest to us. That language is also here on the website. Please note, the National Wildlife Federation does not act in an executor capacity.
Some 60% of Americans die without a valid will. In most cases, State laws then take over and will distribute your probate estate in accordance to a prescribed formula that may not match your wishes.
This is a simple amendment to a will, which avoids the cost, and complication of re-writing an entire will. The codicil must be signed and witnessed or notarized as is the original will.
Yes, if the National Wildlife Federation is named irrevocable beneficiary and the value of the assets to fund the trust is at least $100,000. We can also assist in preparing the trust document, although you need to obtain separate legal council.
Every family is different. Focus on the positive and let them know that family comes first. Discuss with them why saving wildlife is important to you and how the National Wildlife Federation will benefit from the gift.

Annuity FAQ

Your payments are very secure. Founded in 1936, the National Wildlife Federation is one of the oldest charities in the nation and has an endowment valued at over $61 million. Your gift annuity is placed in a segregated fund and your payments are backed by all the assets of the National Wildlife Federation.
Your gift is held with other National Wildlife Federation gift annuities in a segregated fund invested and administered by State Street Global Advisors of Boston. This firm has managed the gift annuity funds of major charities for over 20 years. These funds are held separate from the National Wildlife Federation's general assets and subject to strict investment requirements by various state agencies.
Both have distinct advantages. A gift of cash will produce a larger tax-free portion of the annuity. A gift of stock can increase your income because of reduced capital gains cost. Both assets produce an equal annuity rate and charitable income tax deduction.
A charitable gift annuity is part guaranteed annuity and part charitable contribution. The advantages are: tax benefits for you and the satisfaction of knowing you're establishing a charitable legacy.
You may receive a higher rate of return from a bank or life insurance company but a charitable gift annuity is much more likely to give you the tax benefits you're looking for.

Insurance FAQ

Yes, it's true. If you're a conservationist who is also good at planning your personal finances, you probably have "hidden assets." Retirement plans, property, your future estate, and life insurance are a few examples of the assets you can leverage.
You can make a life insurance gift later or now. Let's talk about later. If you make the National Wildlife Federation a full or partial beneficiary of your policy, after you die, you'll be making a significant gift that will be your legacy to conservation. You'll also be welcomed into the National Wildlife Federation's special group, The Legacy Society.
No. You could have several beneficiaries, like a loved one and the National Wildlife Federation, or the National Wildlife Federation and another of your favorite causes. This is a great way to think about your philanthropic legacy and make a lasting gift.
Correct. If you decide to name the National Wildlife Federation the owner and beneficiary our Philanthropy Team will determine the best strategy for your generous donation. The National Wildlife Federation may surrender the policy for cash OR retain the policy, which will maximize the eventual value.
Yes you will get a tax deduction, because a gift of paid-up life insurance is treated the same as an outright charitable gift of cash. You're entitled to an income tax charitable deduction for the lesser of (1) the replacement value (the current single premium cost of purchasing a policy with equivalent coverage given the insured's current age and state of health) or (2) the adjusted cost basis (total premiums paid less any dividends paid and less other distributions). Your insurance company can provide the adjusted cost basis. When an ordinary income asset such as a paid-up life insurance policy is donated to charity, the donor is not taxed on the gain, but the charitable deduction is limited to the adjusted cost basis.
If they've had the permanent life insurance for two or more year, it probably has cash value. Assuming the donor continues to pay the premiums, the cash value will increase each year, and the National Wildlife Federation will eventually collect the death benefit. The donor is entitled to an income tax charitable deduction for the cash value plus any prepaid premiums and for subsequent premium payments. BUT they must name the National Wildlife Federation the irrevocable owner of the policy in order to receive the tax deduction.

Here are two ideas:

  1. Think about taking out a new policy and making the National Wildlife Federation the owner and beneficiary. The premiums may be considered a charitable tax deduction.
  2. Another way to make life insurance a part of your charitable strategy is to "replace" other assets given to charity. For example, if you make a big gift to charity, whether it's cash, stocks, property, or FUTURE gifts in your estate plans, you can purchase a life insurance policy to "replace" the value of those gifts for your heirs.

Real Estate FAQ

Any land given outright or bequeathed to the National Wildlife Federation is immediately sold and the proceeds used to fund conservation programs. The National Wildlife Federation is not in a position to hold property for any reason.

The National Wildlife Federation considers the following:

  1. Is the property void of any liens?
  2. Are there any environmental concerns with the property?
  3. Is the property marketable and salable within a reasonable period of time?
  4. Can we realize a positive net return on this property?
You'll receive an income tax deduction equal to the appraised fair market value of the property. Donating your property may also reduce your estate costs and taxes.


Do you have more questions?
Contact our Philanthropy Team at 1-800-332-4949 or legacy@nwf.org.

As conservationists, we instinctively know we're doing the right thing by nurturing the future of the National Wildlife Federation with our contributions.

The National Wildlife Federation Philanthropy Team is ready to help you or your advisor chart your course with a Legacy Gift.

Start the conversation by calling 800-332-4949 or legacy@nwf.org

The National Wildlife Federation's TAX ID# 53-0204616

Thank you for visiting the Legacy Society (our online "habitat") and remember…our plans depend on your plans!