The leaders of the three main political parties at Westminster have confirmed their support for the Legacy10 campaign: The Rt. Hon David Cameron MP, Rt. Hon Nick Clegg MP and Rt. Hon Ed Miliband MP have all pledged to leave a charitable legacy in their wills.
Legacy10, launched in November 2011, is a nationwide campaign to increase the number of people in the UK who leave money to charity in their wills. It urges individuals across the UK to pledge 10% of their estate to charity. With effect from April 2012 any estate which leaves at least 10% (of its taxable wealth) to a charitable cause will be able to take advantage of a reduced rate in inheritance tax, from its current level of 40% down to 36%.
Roland Rudd, founder and Chairman of Legacy10, said that the appeal of Legacy10 lay in its simplicity. "We are asking people to make a contribution", he explained, "to their favourite cultural or charitable cause in their will, the benefit to that cause will be four times bigger than the small loss to the donor. I am so pleased that all of our main political leaders have not only chosen to support Legacy10 but have also made a personal commitment to change their wills to make the pledge."
Currently only 7% of the UK population leave a charitable gift in their will, even though 74% support a charity during their lifetime, according to Legacy Foresight's 'Legacy Market Snapshot’, 2011.
CAF Chief Executive John Low welcomed the pledge, saying: "CAF warmly welcomes the announcement by each of the three party leaders that they will leave 10% of their estates to charity.
"This is an excellent gesture, and one that will doubtless be warmly received by the public and charities alike – especially in the current economic climate, where demand on many charities is growing while overall funding for many charities is falling.
"We know from the success of the Gates-Buffett Giving Pledge in the US that where prominent people in society pledge to give a substantial amount of their wealth to charity, many will follow."