Federal Estate Tax Savings
An outright gift to Harvard from your estate—whatever the amount, and whether it is expendable or for endowment—is entirely free from federal estate taxes. This means the University is able to use the full amount of the bequest, whereas if it were left to an individual, a significant amount might go to federal estate taxes. Also, bequests generally are not subject to state inheritance or estate taxes.
Other Advantages of Bequests
You may create a separate fund named for yourself or in the name of someone you wish to honor. Named funds remain visible in the Harvard community because of the people and activities they support. This visibility also encourages others to give.
It is important that you consult with a member of the University staff regarding minimums for named endowed funds.