In addition to annual support from our generous alumni, parents, and friends, our students benefit from the generosity of our donors who choose to make a significant impact with their giving with a Major or Planned Gift.

Whether it's creating an Endowed Scholarship or Prize, leaving a legacy in honor of a loved one with a named space on campus, or making arrangements to support Elmira College with a planned gift, you can leave an impact that will be felt for generations to come.


Bequest and Estate Planning

Bequests – Combine your philanthropy with tax benefits through a charitable bequest to EC. Bequests are gifts that are made as part of a will or trust. Anyone can make a bequest, in any amount, and they can be simple, or complex, with conditions about how the gifts can be used.

Benefits of a Bequest

  • Receive an estate tax charitable deduction
  • Reduce the burden of taxes on your family
  • Leave a lasting legacy to charity

Types of Bequests

  • Percentage bequest – Make a gift of a percentage of your estate;
  • Specific bequest – Make a gift of a specific dollar amount or a specific asset;
  • Residual bequest – Make a gift from the balance or residue of your estate;
  • Contingent Bequest – Make a gift from your estate if the purpose of the primary bequest cannot be met.

Bequest Language

In order to make a bequest, you should speak with your attorney. Your attorney can help you include a bequest to Elmira College in your estate plan. Below are some bequest language samples to assist you and your attorney. 


Sample: “I give, devise and bequeath to Elmira College, Elmira, New York 14901, a portion of my entire estate equal to ____________% thereof, to be used for general purposes by the College.”

Specific Amount, designates a sum of money or specific property

Sample: “I give, devise and bequeath to Elmira College, Elmira, New York 14901, $________________ to be used for general purposes by the College.” 


Sample: "I give, devise and bequeath to Elmira College, Elmira, New York 14901, all of my residual estate to be used for general purposes by the College."


Life Insurance

Life insurance is often overlooked and underestimated, yet it can be a valuable and financially efficient way of making a planned gift to Elmira College. A charitable gift of life insurance is a wonderful way to use policies that you will not need to benefit future Elmira College students. Elmira College accepts various types of life insurance gifts, including:

  • Naming Elmira College as a beneficiary of an existing life insurance policy;
  • Donating an existing life insurance policy to Elmira College;
  • Purchasing a new life insurance policy for Elmira College.


IRAs have two terrific benefits – tax-free contributions and tax-free growth. With low withdrawal requirements, IRAs are wonderful for an IRA owner. Without proper planning, however, IRAs can be a ticking tax time bomb that require the payment of significant taxes by the IRA owner's beneficiaries (e.g. spouse and children). In a large estate, the combined tax rate on IRAs may exceed 70%.

One way to preserve these valuable assets is to designate Elmira College as the beneficiary of all or a portion of your retirement plan. Using these assets for your charitable interests can leave other assets – which are not as heavily taxed – to your family. IRA funds left to the College bypass taxes, preserving these funds intact for your legacy. Simply contact your IRA custodian to add Elmira College to your beneficiaries.


Charitable Gift Annuities (CGAs)

A Charitable Gift Annuity is a simple contract between you and Elmira College in which the College agrees to pay you or you and another beneficiary a guaranteed fixed income for life in exchange for a gift of cash or marketable securities. The gift annuity payments are guaranteed by the entire asset base of the College.
The life of the income beneficiary (the person to receive the annuity payments) is an important factor in determining the payment that Elmira College can guarantee. Gift Annuities can be funded by cash or marketable securities. Depending on the type of asset used to fund the gift annuity, a portion of your gift annuity payments will be tax free to you. In addition, you will receive a charitable tax deduction for a portion of your gift annuity investment.

Gift Annuity payment rates range from 3.7% - 9.0% annually, depending on the age of the donor. Establishing a gift annuity counts toward Reunion gift totals.


Charitable Remainder Unitrust (CRUT)

A Unitrust, also called a Charitable Remainder Unitrust or CRUT, requires that a fixed percentage (up to 5%) of the annual value of trust assets be paid to the income beneficiary.

Another benefit of the Charitable Remainder Unitrust is that it will allow for additional contributions. The Unitrust will generally produce higher amounts of income but a smaller tax deduction.

If you have any questions about leaving a bequest to Elmira College, please contact us. We would be happy to assist you. If you have been so generous as to include a bequest to EC as part of your estate plan, please take the time to let us know. We would like to recognize you and your family for your generosity in our Iris Society.

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