Every year, National Wills Week helps to remind people about the importance of having a Will. Some estimates indicate that only 14% of South Africans have a valid Will in place when they pass away. This leaves 86% of grieving families without an understanding of their loved one’s last wishes.
A Will helps individuals dictate how they want their assets to be distributed, how they want their children to be cared for and what legacy they want to leave to good causes. If a person passes away without a Will, their family will need to grapple their loss, but they will also face the challenges of dealing with bureaucracy and decisions relating to intestate succession.
In 2019, National Wills Week runs from 16 to 20 September. During that week, The Children’s Hospital Trust is joining forces with Cape Town-based attorney David Smit to help individuals draw up a Will to shift the statistics and offer an easier journey for families after losing a loved family member.
At the same time, the Trust is encouraging people to consider leaving a bequest in their Will. Leaving a charitable gift enables people to leave the world a better place, even after they have passed on.
The Children’s Hospital Trust CEO, Chantel Cooper, said: “A valid Will clearly benefits grieving families, but it also offers an opportunity for individuals to continue their good work and keep their compassion alive even after they are gone. Their decision to leave a bequest to the Trust is a legacy that will make a positive difference to thousands of children every year.”
Experienced deceased Estates attorney David Smit, of De Klerk & Van Gend Attorneys, is offering his time and that of his team of attorneys on a pro bono basis to individuals who want to structure their Will to add a bequest to support the Children’s Hospital Trust. Up to a certain threshold, bequests are tax deductible and may also reduce any liability for Estate Duty. David explains: “A bequest offers a greater benefit not only to your legacy but also to your family, whose tax burden will be reduced after you’re gone. It is a profound way to leave your mark on life, even in your death.”
When you make a bequest to the Children’s Hospital Trust, every cent goes towards funding projects to advance child healthcare through the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital.