By remembering Missing People with a gift in your Will, you are making a unique and special commitment. Your legacy to Missing People will help us continue to be a lifeline when it's needed most.
When somone goes missing it can be the worst day of their family’s lives. And, every year, 186,000 people go missing in the UK. Of these, more than 130,000 are children and young people.
Twenty years ago, our founders saw first-hand the real need for specialist support for families of missing people, and since then we have become experts in the field. Our helpline is open 24-hours a day, all year around, offering a vital lifeline for families of people who have disappeared and missing people wanting to reconnect with their loved ones. Every year, we reconnect thousands of adults and children as well as provide hundreds more families of missing people with on-going specialist support.
For those who go missing, we offer a free, confidential lifeline by phone, text or email 24/7 to help them find safety. For their families there is a pain that won’t end until their loved one is found. We never give up on either of them.
Your legacy will help us continue the work of our founders Mary and Janet as we support those who are facing some of the most difficult times of their lives.
Leaving a gift in your Will is a highly personal and very special gift. It is up to you whether or not you inform us of your intention to leave us a legacy gift. However, knowing about your legacy will help us plan ahead and will enable us to keep you in touch with our work.
Our Legacy - The Missing People Story
Missing People founders Mary and Janet started a helpline in response to the disappearance of Suzy Lamplugh from Fulham in 1986. The two sisters, along with a team of dedicated volunteers, were overwhelmed by the number of people calling them. Their helpline provided a lifeline for families with a missing loved one and was invaluable in bringing forward information relating to the whereabouts of vulnerable missing people.
In 2004, Mary and Janet stepped down from their roles at Missing People. However, their legacy lives on and Missing People offers a lifeline to the 250,000 people who run away or go missing each year in the UK; and continues to support the families and loved ones left behind.
Our projects are diverse and far-ranging. However, the constant in our work is the fact that it is your support that enables us to continue to provide our crucial services to those who need it most.
Your legacy will help us continue Mary and Janet’s work of supporting those who are facing some of the most difficult times of their lives. A gift in your Will is an eternal commitment – to those missing and their families – that a lifeline will always be available when it’s needed most.
How your legacy will be used
We rely on the generosity of our supporters to enable us to continue to provide support services to missing people and their families. Without you, our work simply wouldn’t be able to continue. Whatever the amount – large or small – your contribution is invaluable.
Your support means we can:
Reach out to a missing person by text.
Answer a call from a missing people and/or their family members.
Manage a call between a missing teenager and their parents.
Provide counselling sessions for the parents of a missing child.
Launch an appeal for a missing person.
Bring a vulnerable missing person to safety.
Reconnect long lost relatives with each other.
Launch an appeal day for a missing person in their local area.
These are just a few of examples of assistance provided by the team at Missing People on a daily basis.
I can't imagine one of my children going missing or the enormous impact it must have on a family. I wanted to help a charity at the heart of the search, a charity that supports those in need - Missing People is that charity." Mrs Cox, Middlesex
How to make a legacy gift
If you have an existing Will, but would like to leave a legacy to Missing People, you can do so by making an amendment to your existing Will (called a codicil).
If you do not have a Will at the moment, you can include a bequest when you write a Will. Whatever your circumstances, we would advise that you see a solicitor to ensure that your wishes are followed.
Types of Legacy Gifts
A residuary gift is the remainder, or a percentage, of your estate after all other bequests and expenses have been deducted. This ensures your loved ones are taken care of first and the remainder can then be donated to charity.
This is a gift of a specific amount of money of any amount, large or small. If you are thinking of leaving a specific gift to charity you might suggest to your solicitor that your cash gift is index-linked to ensure that its value increases with inflation.
This is the gift of a specific item such as an antique, a property, jewellery or other valuables.
Key points to consider
Always consult a solicitor – it is a good idea to assess what you want to include in your Will, taking into account any savings, property, mortgages and any money owing. Once this is established, arrange an appointment with your solicitor to discuss your Will further.
Appoint your executors – executors are charged with carrying out the instructions you leave in your Will. It is ideal to appoint two people you trust, such as loved ones or professional advisers. It is a good idea to let your loved ones know that you are leaving a gift to charity in your Will, so they are aware of your wishes.
Who do you want to benefit – you may wish to list your beneficiaries as well as gifts you want to leave them. These could be loved ones as well as charities you care about. You can bequeath anything from personal assets to property.
Stay up to date – It is very important to keep your Will up to date to ensure your wishes are met. At such a difficult time, this could cause your family and friends even more heartache. It's important to review your Will regularly – at least once every five years or if you have any major life changes (such as getting married or having children or grandchildren).
Please note – making changes directly to your Will can invalidate it. We recommend that you consult your solicitor. The wording of gifts may vary in Scotland – your solicitor will be able to advise you on the correct terms.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a legacy?
A legacy is a gift left in your Will. You can leave a legacy by writing a new Will, or by making an addition (called a codicil) to your existing Will. We recommended you speak to your solicitor if you wish to create a Will or make any amendments to an existing Will.
I’d like to leave a legacy to Missing People. What information do I need to include?
The most important information you need to include is the charity’s registered name, address and charity number. Your solicitor will be able to assist you with appropriate wording. Please see our details below:
284 Upper Richmond Road West
London, SW14 7JE
Registered charity number: 1020419
What is the best way to leave a gift in my Will to Missing People?
A legacy need not be high in value. Any gift large or small, will make a difference. Many supporters decide to leave a ‘residuary’ gift in their Will (a percentage of the remainder of your estate after all other bequests have been issued). This gift will simply come from whatever is left after your loved ones have been provided for.
Are there any tax benefits to leaving a gift in my Will to Missing People?
If you leave a gift in your Will to a charity the gift is exempt of inheritance tax. This means it is deducted from the total value of your estate before the calculation for inheritance tax is made. For more information, please click here.
I want to leave a gift to a specific project. Can I do this?
Having flexible funding is essential to Missing People’s ability to sustain and expand our support services. Leaving a legacy for our charity's general use is most effective as it means that your gift will be used where it is needed most. Leaving a legacy gift to a specific type of work might mean that it cannot be used. This can occur if we no longer conduct the type of work specified in the future.
My relative has passed away and left a legacy to Missing People in their Will. What do I need to do?
We are very grateful for legacy gifts from generous supporters. Please ask the Executor to notify us in writing of the legacy gift by sending a letter to our address listed above so that we can commence the process of transferring the legacy gift to Missing People. Thank you. Our thoughts are with you at this time.
Why is having a Will important?
Having a Will is the only way to ensure that your wishes are followed once you are gone. If you do not have a Will, the law will decide who inherits your property and monetary assets. Leaving clear instructions and sharing your decisions with your family and friends can give you peace of mind that your final wishes will be understood and respected after you are gone. We recognise that writing a Will is one of the most significant decisions you’ll ever make and appreciate that it’s important to take your time and have all of the relevant information you need to assist you with the process.
The information contained here is for guidance only. Please seek professional legal advice from your solicitor when making or amending your Will.
Here is my promise to be a lifeline for a lifetime