Planned Giving

Planned Giving Phoenix Society

Planned giving empowers individuals to make a gift that lasts. As a member of the Phoenix Society, the legacy society of the National Aviary, your generosity and your love for nature will carry on into the coming years.

A gift to the National Aviary in your will or trust enables you to support the National Aviary’s mission and make a difference. A bequest is easy to arrange, will not alter your current lifestyle in any way, and can be easily modified to address your changing needs.

There are many ways to leave a legacy. To learn about your options for planned giving, read more below, or contact us at or 412-258-9433.

Ways to Leave Your Legacy

Specific Pecuniary Bequest

Distributes a certain dollar amount that you specify. An example of a Specific Bequest would read:

“I hereby devise and bequeath the sum of $25,000 to the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, Inc.”

Percentage Bequest

Distributes a specific percentage of your estate, or a specific percentage of the rest, residue, and remainder of your estate. An Example Percentage Bequest (Outright and Unrestricted) would read:

“I hereby devise and bequeath 75% of my estate to the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, Inc.

Bequest of Remainder Value

Distributes assets remaining in the estate after all other distributions are made. For example:

“I hereby devise and bequeath all the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate to the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, Inc.”

The National Aviary encourages unrestricted gifts. However, gifts may be either restricted or unrestricted.

The will is the cornerstone of most estate plans. It is an important document that directs the distribution of your property in accordance with your wishes at your demise. In general, your will can establish trusts for beneficiaries who may lack the ability or desire to manage and budget an inheritance, name guardians for loved ones who depend upon you for assistance, and direct bequests to those individuals and organizations you wish to benefit.

What if you want to make a bequest but already have a will?

You need to call your attorney and advise him/her of your interest in making a bequest to the National Aviary. In most cases, a bequest may be created by adding a codicil to your existing will. A codicil republishes your existing will and can add other provisions, such as a bequest. Once your bequest has been made, you may have your attorney notify us or simply contact us yourself.

Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT)

This is an irrevocable and tax-exempt charitable trust that pays an annual income to at least one individual for his/her lifetime or for a term of years. At the termination of the trust, a named charitable beneficiary(ies) receives the assets remaining in the trust. A charitable remainder trust may be created during your life or at your death. Numerous statutory regulations govern this type trust.

Charitable Lead Trust (CLT)

In terms of how it works, the CLT can be thought of as the opposite of the CRT. The trust pays an annual income to a charity or charities either over your life or for a term of years. At the termination of the trust, assets remaining in the trust may be distributed to you or to another individual [or individuals] of your choosing. The lead trust may be created during your life or at your death. The lead trust is not a tax-exempt trust. A CLT may be either a statutory lead trust of a donor (grantor) lead trust.

Designating the National Aviary as a Beneficiary

The distribution of all assets owned at death may not be able to be directed through the will. Two examples of such assets would be life insurance and individual retirement accounts – the assets held by both are controlled by the beneficiary designation in effect at our demise.

Life Insurance

A gift of all or a portion of the proceeds of a life insurance policy is a way of leaving a legacy to the National Aviary. To complete such a gift, you will need to obtain and forward a completed Change of Beneficiary form to the carrier that issued the policy. Alternately, you may also make a gift of life insurance to the National Aviary by naming it both the owner and beneficiary of the policy (permanent/whole life insurance only). In addition to the beneficiary change form, you will also need a Change of Ownership form. If you would like a current charitable income tax deduction for the gift, its value must also be established.

IRAs and Other Retirement Accounts

Naming the National Aviary as a beneficiary of some or all of the assets in an individual retirement account (IRA), a 401(k), a 403(b), or other similar plan may be a tax-efficient gift that enables you to achieve your personal and charitable objectives. In many instances, completing a new Beneficiary Designation Form may be all that is required. If you are married, your spouse may need to consent to the transfer.

Funding a Special Purpose or Endowed Fund

Many donors find that using this planning technique to create your legacy at the National Aviary has great appeal. The fund may be created and funded now, created now and funded later, or created and funded in some combination of now and later. You will want to speak to your attorney, tax adviser or financial adviser about creating such a fund. In addition, the National Aviary would also welcome discussing with you your funding interests and the Aviary’s current and future funding needs.

To discuss your options for planned giving or request an informational planned giving packet, contact us at or 412-258-9433.

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