19th October 2018

Interesting trends around large charitable donations have emerged after a Freedom of Information (FOI) request from private client law firm Wilsons, with figures showing a significant increase in the number of estates making transfers to charities upon death.

A total of 3,630 estates made transfers of £1m+ to charities up from 2,855 in 2014/15 (an increase of 25%).

Additionally, the total number of charitable bequests valued above the nil rate band of £325,000 has increased in each of the past 5 years. The increase to 9,970 estates in 2015/16, from 7,490 estates in 2010/11 has resulted in the value of bequests increasing to £3.1bn from £1.5bn.

Although certain charities, such as those that help animals or provide cancer care, remain extremely popular, this increased support of the charitable sector perhaps reflects a more philanthropic approach across the United Kingdom. A general downturn in the UK/World economy could, however, threaten this upward trend.

As things stand, there is a general shift towards larger donations and whilst smaller donations cannot be ignored, those charities operating across the North of England should perhaps be open to reviewing their own donor base and assessing whether there is enough awareness and openness to receiving larger donations.

For more information regarding UNW’s charity and not-for-profit services, please visit the UNW charity page.

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