Charities’ legacy income may decrease by more than a quarter over the coming year, consortium Legacy Foresight has warned.

Prior to the coronavirus crisis, legacy income had been predicted to grow in 2020, but last month Legacy Foresight revised its figures and warned of a drop of up to 9 per cent compared to the previous year.

It is now projecting a decrease of up to 27 per cent based on a combination of economic downturn, lower gift values and ongoing administrative challenges.

In a statement Legacy Foresight, which produces income forecasts and conducts research into donor motivations, said: “Emerging anecdotal evidence suggests that the impact on solicitors, charities and government departments’ capacity to process charitable bequests is more severe than previously assumed.”

Despite its latest predictions, however, the organisation still expects charities’ legacy income to increase from £3.2bn in 2019 to £3.7bn-£3.8bn in 2024.

Jon Franklin, economist at Legacy Foresight, said: “These forecasts show a more dramatic decline in legacy income, especially over the coming year. But despite the enormous uncertainty and significant negative impact in the short term, it’s important to recognise that legacy incomes are still expected to grow over the next five years.”