Alice Alexander, Coho/US Executive Director
An Easy Way to Leave a Gift to Coho/US in your Will: A Codicil
Leaving a gift to the Cohousing Association of the US in your will can be simple - and you don’t need to hire an attorney. Consider creating a codicil.
What is a codicil?
A codicil a simple supplement that changes an existing will, often used to add a bequest to a charity. A codicil is a legal document which allows you to add a provision to an existing will, without the need to prepare and execute an entirely new will. We’re providing you with a Sample Codicil to easily include the Cohousing Association of the U.S. in your estate plan.
How can you use this Sample Codicil?
If you have an attorney: Use this sample form as a guide to provide your attorney correct information, simplifying the process.
If you do not have an attorney: Start the process by locating your original will, which will provide necessary information, including the date your will was executed. Your original will should also indicate the proper procedure in your state for signing and witnessing a codicil, as wills and codicils are generally handled in the same manner.
If you do not have a will: This Sample Codicil is not a will - it’s an addition to a will. You can use the language within the sample codicil to include a gift to the Cohousing Association of the U.S. when you do create a will.
The following is a sample codicil only, not an entire will. A codicil is legal document which allows you to add a provision to an existing will, without the need to prepare and execute an entirely new will. A codicil should not conflict with the content of your existing will, but should simply add a new provision; a conflict in language may result in litigation. It is always best to consult with an attorney, particularly to be certain you are satisfying the laws of your state, or if you have a revocable/living trust, rather than a will.
CODICIL TO THE LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF __________________ (Your Name)
I, _________ (your name) ____________, a resident of _________ (city/county) ________, ______ (state) _____, being of sound mind, do hereby make, publish and declare this to be my codicil to my Last Will and Testament, dated ____________, ________.
I hereby give, devise and bequeath to the Cohousing Association of the U.S., a non-profit corporation, 84-1178324, the following: (examples: “ ____% of my estate,” or “the sum of ________,” or “the residue of my estate.”
In all other respects, I hereby ratify and confirm my said Last Will and Testament.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and seal to this Codicil on this ____ day of _____________, 20__.
______________________________________________ (your signature)
(This portion of the document pertains to the process and language for witnessing of the codicil. The following language is based upon law in many states, requiring two witnesses and a notary public. Look at your existing will for the appropriate witness process and language in your state, as it is generally the same for wills and for codicils. Please note that you should initial the bottom of each page.)
We, the undersigned, do hereby certify that the Testator has signed, sealed, acknowledged and declared the foregoing as and for a Codicil to his/her Last Will, in the presence of us, two competent witnesses, all present together at the same time, who, in his/her presence and at his/her request, and in the presence of each other, have hereunto subscribed our names as attesting witnesses on the day and year above written.
(place your initials here) _______
________(Witness #1 signs here) _________ residing at ____________________________
________(Witness #2 signs here) _________ residing at ____________________________
CITY/COUNTY OF ___________________, to wit:
Before me, on this day, personally appeared _____(your name)__________, ______(Witness #1 name) ____________ and _____(Witness #2 name) _______________, known to me to be the Testator and the witnesses, respectively, whose names are signed to the attached or foregoing instrument and, all of these persons being by me first duly sworn, _____ (your name)_______, the Testator, declared to me and to the witnesses in my presence that said instrument is a Codicil to his/her Last Will and Testament and that he/she had willingly signed it in the presence of said witnesses as his/her free and voluntary act for the purposes herein expressed, that said witnesses stated before me that the foregoing Codicil was executed and acknowledged by the Testator as a Codicil to his/her Last Will and Testament in the presence of said witnesses who in his/her presence and at his/her request and in the presence of each other, did subscribe their names thereto as attesting witnesses on the day of the date of said Codicil and that the Testator, at the time of the execution of said Codicil, was over the age of eighteen (18) years and of sound and disposing mind and memory.
____________________________________ Testator (your signature)
____________________________________ (Witness #1 signature)
____________________________________ (Witness #2 signature)
Sworn and acknowledged before me by ___(your name)_____, the Testator, personally known to me (or proved to me on the basis of satisfactory evidence) and _________(Witness #1 name) ____________ and _______(Witness #2 name) _________, the witnesses, this ______ day of ________________, 20___.
My commission expires:__________________
(place your initials here) _______