A deferred gift is a gift that will come to the Seminary in time rather than within a limited period such as three to five years. The most common type of deferred gift is a bequest in a will. (Everyone should have a will. If you don't, make an appointment today!) Other deferred gifts include charitable trusts, and life insurance. Deferred gifts can be tremendously beneficial both to the Seminary and to the donor. Often donors are able to make far larger contributions than they imagine themselves capable, and those gifts in turn have a far larger impact on the areas of Seminary life they choose to affect. Descriptions of each of these types of gifts may be found by clicking on the underlined links.
All those who make deferred gifts to the Seminary become members of the Jacob Sherred Society. Jacob Sherred was on the vestry of Trinity Church Wall Street and in 1820 his bequest secured the Seminary's financial stability at a time when its future was in doubt. All of us who have studied, taught, worked, and worshiped at GTS are beneficiaries of his generosity and leadership. The Board of Trustees created the Society to honor Sherred's visionary commitment to theological education and to recognize those who join him in that care. Each year at the service of All Saints when the Seminaries benefactors are remembered, there is a special recognition of members of the Sherred Society. As well, there are occasional meetings of the Society where the Dean, trustees, faculty, students and staff gather to give their thanks.
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Paid-up life insurance policies provide an excellent opportunity for accomplishing charitable objectives. If the circumstances under which a life insureance policy was purchased no longer apply, you may wish to consider putting that money to work for General Seminary. This may be done by designating the Seminary as the sole owner and beneficiary of an existing or new policy. In some circumstances, the Seminary will accept policies toward which the donor is still paying premiums. however, in the event the donor cannot fulfill the full premium obligation, the Seminary is unable to assume payments.
Many GTS alumni/ae have designated their Church Life Insurance Corporation groop policies for the benefit of the Seminary. If only 10% of all GTS alumni/ae designated their $30,000 policies for the Seminary, the cumulative effect would be a dramatic increase in the Seminary's endowment. Perhaps in this way your class could be the first to have 100% of its members join the Sherred Society!
Tax information: When a paid-up policy is contributed to the Seminary, the allowable deduction is equal to its replacement value, unless that amount exceeds your tax basis in the policy, in which case the deduction is limited to the basis. If premiums remain to be paid on the policy, the deduction is gnerally equal to the interpolated terminal reserve value of the policy, an amount slightly in excess of the ploicy's cash surrender value.
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Jonathan Silver, Director of Development
Bequests are often the first and easiest deferred gift a donor can make. In planning your estate, you should remember that an outright bequest to General Seminary, as well as certain bequests in trust, are not subject to estate taxation. A bequest should always be drawn up with the advice of an attorney. A bequest to General Seminary can take any of the following forms:
- A specific bequest of a dollar amount or of particular securities or other property;
- A residuary bequest of all or a portion of your estate, after the payment of specific amounts to other beneficiaries;
- A contingent bequest to take effect only in the event that the primary beneficiaries under your will die before you;
- A testamentary trust, which takes the form of a Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust or a Charitable Remainder Unitrust, the corpus of which will be paid to General Seminary upon the death of the trusts income beneficiary.
In order to make a bequest, one must have a will. Everyone should have a will, regardless of the ability or desire to make a charitable bequest. Having a will confers the inestimable peace of mind that one?s estate will be distributed according to personal wishes and not by the laws of the state. Once a will is drawn, bequest intentions are easy to make or amend, and donors often find they are able to make a more significant estate contribution to a beloved institution than may be possible in outright fashion during life.
Bequests: Sample Language
The following language may assist you and your attorney in preparing a bequest.
To make an outright bequest of cash, securities, or other property by designating a specific dollar amount, a particular asset, or a fixed percentage of your estate to the Seminary to be used for its general purposes:
"I give, devise, and bequeath to The General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church, a non-profit educational institution located at 440 West 21st Street, New York, New York, the sum of $________ [or a description of the specific asset], for the benefit of The General Theological Seminary for its general purposes."
To make an outright bequest for a specific purpose:
"I give, devise, and bequeath to The General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church, a non-profit educational institution located at 440 West 21st Street, New York, New York, the sum of $_______ [or a description of the specific asset], for the benefit of The General Theological Seminary to be used for the following purpose: [state the purpose]. If at any time in the judgment of the Trustees of The General Theological Seminary it is impossible or impracticable to carry out exactly the designated purpose, they shall determine an alternative purpose as near as possible to the designated purpose."
To leave the residue portion of your assets after other terms of the will have been satisfied:
"All the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate, both real and personal, I give to The General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church, a non-profit educational institution located at 440 West 21st Street, New York, New York, for its general purposes."
To make a contingency gift, so that the Seminary will receive a portion of your estate if your named beneficiary does not survive you:
"I devise and bequeath the residue of the property, real and personal and wherever situated, owned by me at my death, to [name of beneficiary], if [she/he] survives me. If [name of beneficiary] does not survive me, I devise and bequeath my residuary estate to The General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church, a non-profit educational institution located at 440 West 21st Street, New York, New York, for its general purposes."
For further information, please contact
Director of Development