All Planned Giving Options

Gifts Through Your Will: Bequests

Sequoia National Park, California
Children running, Giant Forest Sequoia National Park, California © Nick Hall

Leave a Lasting Legacy

Many of our supporters leave a gift to The Nature Conservancy in their wills or estate plans so they can do even more to protect nature for future generations. You can, too. You'll be helping to protect our natural resources for years to come.

How It Works

  1. You designate a particular asset or a percentage of your estate to TNC by including a bequest provision in your will or revocable trust. You can do this while creating your will or trust, or you can amend an exisiting one with a simple document. The Conservancy can be either a primary or a contingent beneficiary.
  2. If you plan to restrict the use of your bequest (designating to a specific area or program), you contact TNC while drafting your will or trust to ensure your wishes can be met. The more narrowly you restrict the use of your bequest, the greater the risk that the program you want to benefit today won't be as vital or as relevant when we receive your gift in the future. 
  3. You inform TNC of your commitment, which helps for planning and ensures your wishes can be fulfilled. This is especially important for gifts of real estate, business interest or other specialized property.
  4. The Conservancy receives the gift after your lifetime and applies it to the purpose(s) you specified. At TNC, unrestricted charitable gifts are used to support top conservation priorities worldwide.
  5. Your distribution is fully deductible for federal estate tax purposes, and there is no limit on the deduction your estate can claim. In addition, the gift is usually exempt from state inheritance taxes.


  • Your gift costs you nothing now. You retain control of your assets during your lifetime.
  • You can change your mind or modify your gift if circumstances change.
  • Your gift can remain anonymous if you choose.
  • Your gift may provide tax savings or help reduce the tax burden for your heirs.
  • You can leave a gift in honor or memory of someone who inspired your love of nature.
  • You will be remembered as someone whose legacy included protecting nature, transforming how we use natural resources and inspiring action for our planet.

More Information

  • Please talk with us as you are drafting your will or trust if you want to restrict the use of your bequest. The more narrowly you restrict its use, the greater the risk that the program you want to support won't be as vital when we receive your gift in the future.
  • Similarly, please let us know in advance if you intend to bequeath real estate, a business interest or other specialized property.
  • The remaining balance in your retirement plan makes a tax-wise gift and can be donated to charity. Use your plan's successor beneficiary form to avoid having it included in your taxable estate.
  • There are several types of bequests with different ways to control how your estate is distributed. Contact us for more information.

Naming TNC as a Beneficiary

The remaining balance in your retirement plan makes a tax-wise gift, but don't direct it to us through your will or trust—that will include the plan in your taxable estate. Instead, use your plan's successor beneficiary form.

Similarly, you can also name TNC as primary or contingent beneficiary of your life insurance policy and possibly minimize taxes.

If you wish to name The Nature Conservancy in your will or estate plan, we should be named as:

The Nature Conservancy, a nonprofit corporation, organized and existing under the laws of the District of Columbia, with principal business address of 4245 North Fairfax Drive, Suite 100, Arlington, Virginia 22203-1606.

Our tax identification number is: 53-0242652  |  Date of incorporation: October 11, 1951

Donor Profile

  • Tien and Pei Wu

    Meet Tien and Pei Wu

    Tien and Pei have become regular contributors to TNC and joined The Legacy Club by making a a gift in their will. Read their story.

Share Your Plans

Have you already made a gift through your will, retirement plan, or insurance policy for the future of nature? If so, please let us know your plans so we can thank you and welcome you to The Legacy Club.