What to consider when adding a beneficiary

If your fundraiser was created to raise money for someone else, you’ll have the option to add that person as the beneficiary. This means they will be able to transfer the funds directly to their own bank account. Please review each of the sections below to learn more about what’s involved in adding a beneficiary.

Before sending a beneficiary invitation

We’re glad you were able to raise funds for someone you care about, but it's very important to make sure the person you're adding as the beneficiary is ready and willing to take on the responsibility of bank transfers. The process is simple, but if your beneficiary is going through a tough or busy time, it may be best for you to receive the funds on their behalf. If you do receive funds on their behalf, please include details in your fundraiser story to explain this to your donors. Keep in mind, once your beneficiary accepts the invitation, they will need to be handle all bank transfer updates.

Ask yourself the following questions about your intended beneficiary:

  • Do they have a bank account in the country and currency in which the fundraiser was started? 
  • Do they meet requirements to withdraw funds? 
  • Are they capable of setting up and managing a GoFundMe account?
  • Are they able to follow all steps to set up transfers?

If you’ve answered no to any of these questions, do not send them a beneficiary invitation. You can either choose a different beneficiary or transfer the funds yourself and send them to the recipient outside of GoFundMe.

Secure transfer of funds 

Adding a beneficiary is the fastest and most secure way to get funds to the intended recipient. It also provides transparency and instills a sense of trust among donors.
By adding the beneficiary, you’re allowing them to connect their own bank information through their own GoFundMe account. This means you won’t have to worry about handling the funds yourself.
However, for security reasons, it’s very important to make sure you personally know your beneficiary. Please make sure you review this article if a stranger contacts you and asks to be added as your beneficiary.

The beneficiary will add their own bank information, so funds will not go through your account 

For the beneficiary, setting up bank transfers involves adding their personal and bank information, and could require them to upload documents to be reviewed and verified by our payment partner. Our support team will be available to help them every step of the way, but please keep in mind that as soon as your beneficiary accepts their invitation, a GoFundMe account will be created for them using their personal email. Their GoFundMe account is separate from yours, so you won’t be able to assist them from within your account.
If your beneficiary has already set up transfers and is having trouble receiving funds, please review this article for more information.

The beneficiary’s name will show on your fundraiser page 

Your fundraiser page will show that you’re raising funds on behalf of your beneficiary. If your beneficiary is concerned about their name showing publicly, for safety or privacy reasons, then it might be better for you to receive funds on their behalf. Another option would be for them to use a nickname when setting up their GoFundMe account, as long as they use their full, legal name when setting up their bank transfers.

You cannot add a service provider as the beneficiary 

If your fundraiser is raising funds to pay for a service, such as a funeral or tuition, you’ll still need an individual to receive the funds. You can’t add a funeral home or school as the beneficiary, so you or your beneficiary will need to receive funds personally and then transfer the funds to the service provider outside of GoFundMe.

Only one beneficiary can be added to a fundraiser 

It’s not possible for more than one bank account to receive funds from a fundraiser. If the funds are meant to be split between more than one recipient, then it’s best for you to receive the funds yourself and send them to the recipients outside of GoFundMe. If you’ve added a beneficiary and they’re no longer able to add their bank account, please fill out this form and our team will assist. You can also read this article for more information about that process.

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