A view of a walled garden in summer, with bright pink flowering shrubs in the foreground and a white glasshouse in the background.

Gifts in Wills FAQ

Thank you so much for your interest in including a gift to the National Trust for Scotland in your Will. Every gift to our charity helps us keep on protecting the wonderful places in our care.

Here are our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions. If you have a question that isn’t included below, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Is there someone I can talk to about leaving a gift in my Will to the National Trust for Scotland?

Our Legacy Fundraising Manager, Hannah Ennis, would be delighted to hear from you. You can contact Hannah on legacy@nts.org.uk or 0131 458 0342.

How do I include a gift in my Will to the Trust?

The most important information to include is our charity name, address and registered charity number. This makes it clear that you intend your gift to be received by us to fund our future work.

Charity name: The National Trust for Scotland

Our address: Hermiston Quay, 5 Cultins Road, Edinburgh EH11 4DF

Charity number: SC007410

How much will make a difference?

Every gift, no matter the size, will help us to protect the places in our care for generations to come. There’s a common misconception that you need to be very wealthy to include a gift in your Will – but this simply isn’t the case. By including a percentage of your estate that feels right to you, and after you’ve taken care of your loved ones, you will make a huge difference to our work.

What if I don’t have a Will?

Writing your Will and keeping it up to date is the best way to ensure that your wishes will be carried out properly after you die. We always recommend that you speak to a qualified solicitor or legal advisor when preparing your Will. You can find a registered professional through one of the organisations listed below:

Remember a Charity website

Law Society Scotland website or call 0131 226 7411

Law Society England and Wales website or call 020 7320 5650

Law Society Northern Ireland website or call 02890 231614

I have a Will already; what should I do?

Updating or making minor alterations to your Will is easy to do. We recommend contacting your solicitor and letting them know of the changes you’d like to make. They may suggest adding a Codicil or rewriting your Will, both of which are straightforward to do.

What should I do if I have already included the National Trust for Scotland in my Will?

Thank you so much for choosing to support our work in this meaningful way. We'd be very grateful if you would consider letting us know about your future gift, so that we show our sincere thanks for your support and invite you to learn more about our work with our exclusive behind-the-scenes tours, events and talks.

You can let us know by filling out our online form or by emailing legacy@nts.org.uk

Are there different types of gifts I can include?

There are a few different types of gifts in Wills that you can leave to the Trust. The main types of gifts that we typically receive are listed below.

Residuary gift: This is when you leave a portion or percentage of your estate, after all fees, taxes, debts and other gifts have been paid. Many people leave residuary gifts to ensure that loved ones are taken care of first. You don’t need to worry if your financial situation changes later in life, as these gifts maintain their value over time.

Pecuniary gift: This is when you leave a fixed sum of money.

Specific gift: This is when you leave a specific item, for example a property or a piece of art.

Are there any tax benefits to leaving a gift in my Will?

All gifts in Wills are exempt from inheritance tax. You may wish to discuss other ways of minimising the tax burden on your estate with your solicitor. Please note that Gift Aid does not apply to gifts in Wills.

Can I choose what my gift is spent on?

Most gifts to the Trust are unrestricted and allow us to use the funds where the conservation need is greatest.

You may wish for your gift to go towards a specific place in our care that holds special memories for you, or to an area of our work that you are particularly passionate about. This can be expressed in a Will as either a ‘wish’ or a ‘condition’.

If expressed as a ‘wish’, we promise to do what we reasonably can to fulfil the wish but we do have the flexibility to apply the funds more generally should the charity’s portfolio and priority projects change in years to come.

If expressed as a ‘condition’, we are limited to only use the funds exactly as specified in the Will. We have an evolving programme of works across the charity and with this in mind, having the flexibility of an expression of wish helps to ensure our charity will be able to make the best use of your generous gift in the future.

I would like donations to the National Trust for Scotland at my funeral in lieu of flowers.

Many people choose to ask for donations to be made in lieu of flowers when planning their funeral. If this is stated clearly in your Will, your executors can make sure your wishes are carried out. We advise discussing this with your solicitor whilst making your Will.

I am an executor. Where should I send a payment?

Thank you very much for your assistance. Please send all correspondence to the National Trust for Scotland, Hermiston Quay, 5 Cultins Road, Edinburgh EH11 4DF.

Cheques should be made payable to the National Trust for Scotland.

If you require more information, please contact Hannah Ennis on legacy@nts.org.uk or 0131 458 0342.