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FAQs

We encourage you to seek professional advice when drafting or amending your will.  However, if you have any questions which are not answered here, please email Marc Hornby in confidence on m.hornby@aston.ac.uk or call +44 (0)121 204 4577.

Leaving a gift in your will to Aston University is simple.

If you are making a new will, you need to include Aston University’s name and address and record your wishes for how you would like your gift used. There are a number of ways you can make a gift to Aston University such as a leaving a specific amount or a percentage of the residue of your estate. There are some suggested words on our website.

If you have already written a will and want to make changes to include a gift to Aston, you can easily do this by completing a codicil and storing the new instructions with your will.

Aston University cannot give any legal or financial advice on making a will or planning your estate. If you wish to write a new will or update an existing one, we recommend you consult your solicitor or professional advisor. We are unable to recommend solicitors or professional advisors. If you do not have someone who can advise you, you can find useful information on choosing an advisor on the Law Society website.

Making a will is one of the most important considerations of our lifetime. It is a time to reflect and consider what means most to us now and in the future. You may want to provide for those close to you first and then consider how you might want to leave a lasting impact on other causes. By planning ahead, you can make sure your wishes are fulfilled.

There are a number of ways you can make a gift to Aston University and your solicitor or professional advisor will help you decide. Even a modest gift will make a significant difference to Aston and its future generations of students and researchers.

Yes, legacies are the greatest gift anyone can make – large or small your gift is of great value to the University and is always very gratefully received. Our alumni and friends have bequeathed a number of legacies over the years. Aston has received gifts upwards of £1,000 and each one has made a significant difference. Some gifts have funded specific research, others were in the form of scholarships or bursaries which helped students who would not otherwise study here achieve their full potential, whilst others were given for unrestricted purposes which meant they could be used where the need was greatest.

If you have already written a will and want to make changes to include a gift to Aston University, you can easily do this by completing a codicil and storing the new instructions with your will. Your solicitor or professional advisor can help you with this.

There are five main types of gift you can leave in your will, some may be more appropriate for you than others. For this reason we would encourage you to seek professional advice when making or amending a will.

Residuary gift: the whole or a percentage share of your estate which remains after settling debts, costs, and other specified gifts. The value of this type of gift is unaffected by inflation.

Pecuniary gift: a fixed sum of money. It may be worth considering that the value of this type of gift will decrease over time and the purpose for which you intended it may no longer be possible. However, the gift can be index-linked and your solicitor or professional advisor will be able to help you with this.

Specific gift: a specified bequest (such as individual items, appreciated assets, or shares) which might be used or sold to support the work of the University.

Reversionary gift: this gift is left to another beneficiary in the first instance and subsequently reverts to Aston (usually when the initial beneficiary has passed away). This is a common type of gift sometimes chosen to benefit partners, children or grandchildren for their lifetime and subsequently the University following their death(s).

Income Trust: a gift which benefits the University for a specific period of time.

Yes, you can.

One of the most valuable ways of supporting Aston is to leave an unrestricted gift as we will have the flexibility to use the gift where the need is greatest. However, you can shape your gift to fit with your own particular interests in an area of research or in student life.

For example your gift to an area of research at Aston will help encourage new thinking and shape ideas that will answer some of the most pressing questions we face today. Or, you may wish to transform the lives of students who might otherwise be unable to achieve their potential by channelling your gift to developing the Aston experience and widening opportunities for future generations of Aston students.

But do take into consideration that Aston’s needs and priorities evolve and, in order to make sure that your wishes can be fully carried out in the future, we would like to invite you to contact us in confidence to discuss your plans further if you are thinking about supporting a specific area. You can then be happy in the knowledge that your gift will be used for the purpose you wish. For more information, please contact Marc Hornby in confidence on +44(0)121 204 4577 or email m.hornby@aston.ac.uk

To discuss endowments please contact Marc Hornby on +44(0)121 204 4577 or email m.hornby@aston.ac.uk

Yes. Aston University is classified as an Exempt Charity under Schedule 3 of the Charities Act 2011. If you make charitable gifts in your will, you can reduce the Inheritance Tax liability of your estate. Furthermore, from April 2012 the Inheritance Tax rate will be reduced from 40% to 36% for individuals who leave at least a tenth of their estate to charities. Please seek advice from your solicitor or professional advisor on this aspect of your estate planning.

We understand that your will is a private matter and that you may prefer not to share any details. However, knowing about your intentions will help us ensure that any aspect of your wishes involving Aston University is understood and achievable. We can also thank you personally in your lifetime for your support by welcoming you as a member of the Woodcock Society.

We cannot recommend solicitors or professional advisors. If you do not have someone who can advise you, you can find useful information on choosing an advisor on the Law Society website.
Some areas of Scottish law relating to the administration of estates are different to UK law. Please seek advice from your solicitor or professional advisor.

Please send all correspondence to:

Marc Hornby
Development & Alumni Relations Office
Aston University
Aston Triangle
Birmingham
B4 7ET

Email: m.hornby@aston.ac.uk
Tel. +44 (0)121 204 4577

Cheques should be made payable to Aston University.
Contact us if you require details for a bank transfer.