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Vermont Land Trust
lambs in field

Making a Bequest

Bequests are one of the easiest ways to make a gift to the Vermont Land Trust. A bequest directs money or other property to go to specified individuals or organizations upon your death. Unlike some other planned giving options, bequests allow you to change your mind at any time. Property left to charities (such as the Vermont Land Trust) is deductible from your taxable estate and may result in substantial tax savings. If you are ready to create your legacy today, use our online will-writing tool to start your will now.

Learn about the Baird family’s decision to make a bequest to the Vermont Land Trust:

In Your Will or Living Trust

To make the process of creating a bequest simple, we’ve partnered with our friends at FreeWill to provide you a free, online resource that allows you to write your will and create your legacy at the Vermont Land Trust. The tool takes about 20 minutes to complete, and is legally valid in all 50 states. Start your legacy today.
If you have a more complicated estate or wish to consult with an attorney about your wishes, you can use FreeWill to create a list of documented wishes.
If you would prefer to work directly with an attorney on the language in your will, we have provided some sample language you may use to direct a bequest of money, stocks, bonds, land, tangible personal property or other assets to the Vermont Land Trust.

Sample language

I give, devise, and bequeath to the Vermont Land Trust, Inc., a nonprofit charitable organization with offices in Montpelier, Vermont, the sum of $____________ (or describe any real or personal property), to be used for its general purposes.

The suggested wording for leaving all or a part of the balance of the estate after debts, burial costs, probate expenses, and specific bequests have been satisfied might be:

I give, devise, and bequeath to the Vermont Land Trust, Inc., a nonprofit charitable organization with offices in Montpelier, Vermont, all (or ____%) of the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate, to be used for its general purposes.

It helps to inform us

We encourage you to share your estate plans with us. This helps us to better assess our financial picture and make informed decisions.Please consider returning this Bequest Intention Form to us, or call Christa Kemp at (802) 262-1229. We promise to honor any request for privacy.

If a bequest involves real estate

it is very important for you to meet with our staff while the will is still in preparation, so that we can discuss your intentions and determine that we can meet them. If you intend to bequeath a conservation easement, we need to verify that accepting the easement conforms to our policies and discuss what restrictions you want to see placed on the land. We will then draft the easement for you and your attorney to review. Please contact Christa Kemp at (802) 262-1229 to learn more.

In an Insurance Policy or Retirement Account

It’s easy! All you have to do is contact the life insurance company or IRA provider and request a “change of beneficiary” form. Please note, if you wish to leave money to your heirs and to the Vermont Land Trust it may be better to name us as the beneficiary of your IRA and leave other assets to individuals. This is because non-spouse beneficiaries who inherit a traditional IRA must choose between two options: liquidate and pay taxes on those assets within five years of the owner’s death, or “stretch” their required minimum distributions out over their lifetime.


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Total acres
Farms using
conserved land
Acres of
Catamount Trail
VAST Trail
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