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Experience with FreeWill.com

  • 1.  Experience with FreeWill.com

    Posted 19 days ago
    Has anyone had any experience with FreeWill.com? I received an unsolicited message indicating that someone had left a bequest to the college, but no further info can be divulged unless/until I set up a meeting which I suspect will be a sales pitch. They claim that "More than 600+ nonprofits have already used FreeWill to raise over $4.7B in bequests, qualified charitable distributions, and stock gifts." I'm not sure what their business model is - are they trying to compete with Crescendo and PGCalc?

    Kimberly G. Berry

    Associate Vice President, Advancement Operations

    Office of Advancement and Alumni Relations

    Guilford College

    Office: (336) 316-2352   Cell: (518) 522-8800



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    Kim Berry
    Associate Vice President, Advancement Operations
    Guilford College
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  • 2.  RE: Experience with FreeWill.com

    Posted 19 days ago
    Hi Kim,

    FreeWill offers free estate planning services to individuals, and charges nonprofits for notification of bequests intentions, as well as for listings in their nonprofit directory, and in their marketing outreach. This was the only way they earned money until recently, when they added some tools for accepting other gifts, like IRA distributions, stocks, and crypto, for which they take a processing fee. They haven't spoken publicly about other products that they're intending to build, but they just closed a $30m funding round a few months ago, led by Bain Capital, so I'm guessing there is more to come.

    Note that FreeWill's bequest intention reporting service is based on users entering in these bequests in the online will-creation tool, and giving consent for notification. There is no guarantee that the will that was created will be signed and executed. And like with all wills, it may be modified in the future. Since the vast majority of FreeWill bequests are gifts of a percentage of the estate, value of the bequest is based on the donor's own estimate of the value of their estate, which may not be reliable.

    While I have no direct connection to FreeWill, I was involved in a similar effort, with a similar business model, over ten years ago. I think FreeWill has a sound approach and provides a worthwhile service. 

    Thank you,
    Isaac Shalev
    Data Strategy Expert
    Sage70, Inc.
    (917) 859-0151
    isaac@sage70.com

    Schedule a 30-minute consultation now:






  • 3.  RE: Experience with FreeWill.com

    Posted 18 days ago
    Kim,

    We did the free trial for one year before opting not to continue to use FreeWill. I don't know if they still offer the free trial option, but it was a great way for us to try it out. You should contact our Director of Planned Giving, Mary Helen McCulloch at mmcculloch@haverford.org to learn more.

    Jeff

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    Jeff Day
    Director of Development
    The Haverford School
    jday@HAVERFORD.ORG
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  • 4.  RE: Experience with FreeWill.com

    Posted 18 days ago
    Thanks for the feedback and overview, Isaac. I had seen the info about capital investment. I'm taking the call and seeing where it goes.

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    Kim Berry
    Associate Vice President, Advancement Operations
    Guilford College
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