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Sample Gift Language for your Will or Revocable Living Trust

A gift to the Kennedy Center in your will or revocable trust enables you to support our mission and make a difference in the lives of future generations. A bequest:

  • is easy to arrange.
  • will not alter your current lifestyle in any way.
  • can be easily modified to address your changing needs.

Residual Gift Language

A residual bequest comes to us after your estate expenses and specific bequests are paid:

I give and devise to The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera (Tax ID #53 0245 017), located in Washington, DC, all (or state a percentage) of the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate, both real and personal, to be used for its general support (or for the support of a specific fund or program).

Specific Gift Language

Naming The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera as a beneficiary of a specific amount from your estate is easy:

I give and devise to The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera (Tax ID #53 0245 017), located in Washington, DC, the sum of $___________ (or asset) to be used for its general support (or for the support of a specific fund or program).

Contingent Gift Language

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera or its affiliates can be named as a contingent beneficiary in your will or personal trust if one or more of your specific bequests cannot be fulfilled:

If (insert name) is not living at the time of my demise, I give and devise to The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera (Tax ID #53 0245 017), located in Washington, DC, the sum of $ _______ (or all or a percentage of the residue of my estate) to be used for its general support (or for the support of a specific fund or program).

Retirement Plan Beneficiary Language

You may name The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera (Tax ID #53 0245 017) as a beneficiary of your IRA or other qualified retirement benefits. Donors should consult with their tax advisor regarding the tax benefits of such gifts.

Naming the Kennedy Center as the beneficiary of a qualified retirement plan asset such as a 401(k), 403(b), IRA, Keogh or profit-sharing pension plan will accomplish a charitable goal while realizing significant tax savings. It can be costly to pass such assets on to heirs because of heavy tax consequences. By naming the Kennedy Center as a beneficiary of a retirement plan, the donor maintains complete control over the asset while living, but at the donor's death the plan passes to support the Kennedy Center free of both estate and income taxes.

Making a charitable gift from your retirement plan is easy and should not cost you any attorney fees. Simply request a change-of-beneficiary form from your plan administrator. When you have finished, please return the form to your plan administrator and notify The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Symphony Orchestra, or Washington National Opera. We can also assist you with the proper language for your beneficiary designation to the Kennedy Center.

Customized Language

If you or your attorney would like the Kennedy Center to provide you with customized beneficiary language that is specific to your goal and interest, please contact us.

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The material presented on this Planned Giving website is not offered as legal or tax advice.
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