Author Topic: Leaving assets to charity  (Read 1798 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Leaving assets to charity
« on: February 07, 2017, 03:51:39 PM »
I'm single with no kids and trying to figure out the easiest way to leave my assets to charities in case I die.

My financial setup is pretty simple -- the vast majority of my money is invested in a three-fund portfolio across a Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, and brokerage account at Vanguard. I've listed two charities as primary and backup beneficiaries on all three of these accounts. The only other thing I have is a checking account whose funds I can direct the executor of my will to use for funeral expenses etc, and give whatever's left to surviving family members.

Is there anything else I can/should do to make sure the charities I specify get the assets as quickly and easily as possible?

Proud Foot

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Re: Leaving assets to charity
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2017, 03:55:18 PM »
Do those charities know they are the beneficiaries of those accounts? If at least the ones who are the primary beneficiaries know about it then they can contact Vanguard and your executor to get the funds transferred to their possession quicker.


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: Leaving assets to charity
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2017, 03:58:28 PM »
Does anyone know you are leaving assets to charities?  And which charities they are?  As I understand it, financial institutions don't notify  beneficiaries when they find out you died.  In fact, the financial institution won't know you died until someone tells them. 

Ensure that your executor knows the charities are beneficiaries of your accounts.  I'd also check with Vanguard and the charities to see how it should work.


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: Leaving assets to charity
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2017, 05:37:21 PM »
I have nothing to add other than what's already been suggested - let the charities know, and they may even have some advice for you.

But I do want to say thank you, for choosing to think about leaving a legacy behind, by funding causes that you support/feel strongly about.  It helps to leave a better world for future generations.


  • Bristles
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Re: Leaving assets to charity
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2017, 07:13:53 PM »
As long as vanguard is told of your death, the money should get to the charities. Contracts like this do not need a will our any other legal documents


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: Leaving assets to charity
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2017, 08:12:39 AM »
If you haven't already, I would specify in your will where your Vanguard assets go besides just listing the charities as the beneficiaries through the Vanguard's site.