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Gifts by Will or Trust

One Donor. Many Ways to Make an Impact.

Your donation makes it possible to help all people who come to us for life-saving, life-changing medical care. To provide the latest disease-fighting technology. To offer programs in our community that you and your neighbors depend on for good health. That's the difference you can make. 

Donate Today to a Cause You Care About

A bequest is one of the easiest ways to give

Simply adding language and details to your will or trust can ensure your wishes are met.

A charitable gift from your estate is a favored method to achieve your financial goals and benefit BSMH Foundation. No other planned gift is as simple to make or as easy to change, should you ever need the assets during your lifetime. 

Remembering BSMH Foundation in your will is a wonderful way to make a lasting gift. Large or small, your bequest will make an important contribution to the healing Mission of our health care ministry.

Allow us to celebrate your generosity 

Please let us know if you have included BSMH Foundation in your estate plans so we can properly thank you for your thoughtful gift and confirm that we can carry out your wishes. We want to keep you informed and engaged through special communications and recognition events that honor your impact.

A bequest may be right for you if:

  • You want to make a gift to BSMH Foundation.
  • You want the flexibility to change your mind.
  • You want continued access to your wealth, should you need it.
  • You are concerned about outliving your resources.

Don't have a will or living trust? 

You are not alone. Most Americans don’t have a will. But without one, state laws will decide how your estate is divided. Typically, the probate court will divide your estate among your closest surviving family members according to a formula, and none of your estate can go to BSMH Foundation or any other charity. If you wish to have a say in how your estate is distributed, you must have a will or living trust. We encourage you to work with an experienced attorney to create a will or living trust that accomplishes your goals for your estate.

Ways you can leave a charitable gift in your will or trust

There are several ways to define the amount of your gift to BSMH Foundation, including:

  • A gift of a particular amount of money. For example, you give $25,000.
  • A gift of a specific item or items. For example, you give 1,000 shares of ABC Corporation.
  • A gift that will be made only if one or more conditions are met. For example, you give $25,000 provided your spouse is not still living and we still offer a particular program or service.
  • A gift that will be made from the remainder of your estate (a "residuary bequest”) once all other bequests, debts and taxes have been paid. For example, you give 25% of the remainder of your estate, ensuring your family is taken care of before your estate makes a bequest to us.

Specify how your bequest gift can be used

You have several options for telling BSMH Foundation how we may use your bequest once we receive it. And any type of bequest can be made in honor or in memory of someone special. We can even notify them or their loved ones of your recognition. Some bequest types to consider are:

  • Unrestricted Bequest: A gift for general purposes and the greatest needs at Bon Secours Mercy Health, applying your gift to the best possible use at the time we receive it.
  • Restricted Bequest: A gift designated for a specific use, such as a special project or program that is important to you. It is best to consult with us before placing restrictions on your bequest to be sure we can carry out your wishes.
  • Endowed Bequest: A gift where your restricted or unrestricted donation is invested along with the rest of our endowment assets, with earnings distributed as directed by our endowment spending policy (hyperlink to PDF of policy document). This ensures your gift will continue to make a difference long after you're gone.
  • Bequest information to ensure your wishes are met

Your bequest needs to be clearly documented in your estate plan to avoid any question that your bequest is to our organization so we can carry out your wishes as intended. And if circumstances change, you can revise your gift to us at any time. We are pleased to consult with you regarding the terms of your bequest and provide sample bequest language to assist you and your attorney. 

Be sure to include our full legal name and federal tax identification number when recording the bequest in your estate plan. 

Legal name: Bon Secours Mercy Health Foundation
Current Address: 1701 Mercy Health Pl., Cincinnati, OH 45237-6147
Tax ID number: 20-1072726

Tax benefits

Because your bequest is revocable, you do not receive an income tax charitable deduction when you create it. Rather, your estate receives an estate tax deduction for the full value of your bequest in the year it is made. Depending on a variety of factors including the size of your estate and estate tax law at the time your estate is settled, this deduction may or may not save estate taxes.

Bequest alternatives

In addition to adding bequest language to your will or trust, here are a few other simple ways you can give:

  • Make BSMH Foundation a designated beneficiary of a life insurance policy.
  • Make BSMH Foundation a designated beneficiary of an IRA or other retirement plan.
  • Make BSMH Foundation a designated beneficiary of savings bonds.
  • Instruct your bank to "pay on death" to BSMH Foundation some or all of a specific bank account.
  • Instruct your brokerage firm to "transfer on death" to BSMH Foundation some or all of a specific brokerage or other financial account.

Example scenario

Laurie Dean, a widow, has been a supporter of Bon Secours Mercy Health Foundation for many years. Laurie is in good health now, but does not want to be a financial burden to her children should she require expensive health care in the future.

She has been dedicated to Bon Secours Mercy Health Foundation along with another charity and wants to make a lasting gift to each of them in memory of her husband. After discussing her options with her estate planning advisor, she decides to create a residuary bequest in her will for each of her two favorite charities. Each charity will receive 50% of the remainder of her estate after all other obligations, such as taxes and bequests to her children and grandchildren, have been taken care of.


  • Laurie’s assets will remain available to her should she need them, minimizing the possibility that she will ever need financial help from her children.
  • If her estate is worth what she expects when it is settled, she will be able to provide generous legacy gifts to the two charities that have meant the most to her and her late husband.
Bequest brochure

Free Printable Bequest Brochure

View a handy printable summary of information on giving by bequest through your will or trust. The brochure can help you discuss your wishes with loved ones and your legal advisor.
Bequest language

Sample Bequest Language

It may be helpful to provide recommended bequest language to your legal advisor when creating or updating your will or trust. Our printable bequest language document has wording for several types of bequests to help you clearly define your charitable intentions.