Estate & Legacy Giving

Your support of Bishop’s can have an immediate and a lasting impact on students.

There are many ways that you can help support Bishop’s University, making a difference in a way that means the most to you. A gift can be designated (for example, for the creation of a scholarship or to support a specific project) or undesignated, in which it will be used to help fund the University’s highest priorities.

You can decide if your gift will be endowed or directly funded. Endowed gifts are invested by the University to create a steady income stream in perpetuity, while directly funded gifts are spent immediately or over a defined period.

You may also choose to make a deferred gift, to be given sometime in the future. Most of these are referred to as planned gifts, but include bequests, gifts of life insurance or RRSPs. Another option you may wish to consider is to make a “hybrid” gift whereby an annual gift amount (direct funded) is supplemented with long-term planning for a deferred gift, made via a bequest or a life insurance policy.

Reasons to consider legacy giving:

  • Commemorate your life achievements
  • Support the areas that mean the most to you at Bishop’s
  • Achieve your personal, financial and philanthropic goals
  • Receive tax benefits while retaining control of your assets
  • Positively influence the leaders of tomorrow

We always recommend that you consult your financial advisor to determine which strategy is best suited given your personal financial situation.

Ways to give:


You designate Bishop’s University in your will and, if you have a project in mind (such as endowing a scholarship fund in your name), specify the purpose for which you are making your bequest.

Your bequest can be universal, by which you leave the totality of your estate to the university. Or your bequest can be specific, whereby you give a specific amount or asset, or it can consist of a percentage of your estate. You can also leave the residue of your estate, in which case the University will receive the portion of your estate that remains after other specific bequests have been distributed. Other options include contingent bequests or a testamentary trust.

Examples of designations:

Universal bequest:
“I give and bequeath the totality of my estate to the Bishop’s University Foundation…”

Specific bequest:
Designated: “I give and bequeath the Bishop’s University Foundation the sum of $25,000 to endow a scholarship under my name.”

Undesignated: “I give and bequeath the Bishop’s University Foundation 30% of the value of my estate for the general purposes of the University and its greatest needs…”

Residual bequest:
“I give and bequeath to each of my children the sum of $… and the residual of my estate to the Bishop’s University Foundation.”

Contingent bequest:
The University only receives a bequest in the event of the death of the primary beneficiary named in the will.

Testamentary trust:
This option allows you to provide for the ongoing needs of your spouse and family, while retaining the capital to provide a legacy to Bishop’s.

Life Insurance

There are several ways of making a gift through life insurance:

  • Surrender an existing policy: Individuals may own life insurance that they purchased for financial security when they were younger. Circumstances may have changed so that the life insurance policy is no longer needed, and the ownership of the existing policy can be transferred to Bishop’s University. In this case, you receive a tax receipt for the fair market value of the policy at the time of your gift (which may exceed the policy’s cash surrender value). If premiums are still being paid on the policy, you will receive tax receipts for all future premiums.
  • Purchase a new policy: You purchase a new policy and name Bishop’s University as the owner and beneficiary. You receive a tax receipt for premiums paid each year. Bishop’s will receive the proceeds of the life insurance policy upon your death and use the funds to support your designated project or to support the University’s greatest needs.
  • Designate Bishop’s as the beneficiary of your policy: You can name Bishop’s University as a beneficiary of a new or existing insurance policy. Upon your death, Bishop’s will receive the proceeds of the life insurance and your estate will receive a charitable tax receipt equal to the policy’s death benefit.

Retirement Plan Assets (RSP, FERR)

You can consider donating all or part of your retirement plan through a bequest. Amounts from retirement plans for charitable use are still included in your taxable estate, but are fully deductible from your estate as charitable gifts. You may also decide to withdraw from your retirement plan (in part or in totality) to make a donation to Bishop’s University. This strategy, if carefully planned financially, can produce interesting tax benefits for you.

For more information:

For information on any of the above options, contact your financial advisor, or speak with Bruce Stevenson:

Mr. Bruce Stevenson Estate Giving & Donor Relations, Bishop’s University Foundation Advancement Office
Phone: 819-822-9600 ext. 2264

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