Take Root: Leaving a Gift in Your Will

October 31, 2022

Many of you, our generous donors, support Humber through donations, pledges and gifts of stock.  Your generosity lights the way for our innovation and programs in such impactful ways.  But did you know there are a variety of benefits by giving another way? Leaving a legacy at Humber River Hospital can take root in a variety of different ways and this is the place where we will explore topics related to planned giving.

In every edition of Take Root, we answer a question from a donor on anything from leaving a gift in their Will, to giving through RRSPs, RRIF and more! In this edition, our friend Yanique Russell, Founder of Yanique Russell Law Professional Law Corporation, shares her expertise.


Q: I just recently lost my husband of 42 years and I’m coming to terms with my new life as a widow.  It’s been really hard, but I’ve been leaning on my family and friends for support. This life change required me to re-do my Will, which my lawyer helped me with, but many of my friends have shared with me that they have included a gift to a charity in their Will. What are the benefits of this and how would I go about leaving a gift in my Will to my favourite charity (i.e. Humber!)?


A: Let me start by extending my condolences to you and your family.  There are indeed benefits to leaving a gift to a charity in your Will and I’m happy to share more with you.

A charitable bequest is easy to arrange, flexible, and will support your wishes to take care of your family and make a lasting impact on your favourite charity by giving a bigger donation than you would be able to otherwise.  Your lawyer will help you determine the best structure for a charitable gift in your Will, these can include:

Specific Bequest – you designate a specific dollar amount of piece of property in your Will to a charity

Residual Bequest – in your Will you allocate all or a portion of your estate that remains after all debts, taxes and expenses are paid

Contingent Bequest – you make a provision in your Will that your gift only takes effect if your primary intention cannot be met

The financial advantages to this type of charitable giving are a little less known. The Canadian government has created very effective tax incentives to encourage individuals to leave a gift to charity from their estates. Upon passing, a person is deemed to have disposed of each capital property they own and received proceeds of such at fair market value. This will likely trigger a capital gain, 50% of which will be subject to tax.

Leaving a charitable gift in your Will is one way to help you shelter your loved ones from this exorbitant amount by reducing the tax burden on your estate while allowing your favorite charity to benefit from receiving a gift.



Caterina Planned Giving

Do you have a question you would like answered by our experts? If you’d like to learn more about this type of giving, please contact Caterina Magisano at 416.242.1000 ext. 81516, cmagisano@hrh.ca.

This information does not replace advice from your professional finance advisor.  Please contact them with questions about your specific financial life plan.