Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Friday, July 20, 2018

CLE on Estate Planning for the Family Business Owner 2018

CLE
The American Legal Institute is holding a conference entitled, Estate Planning for the Family Business Owner 2018, Thursday, November 1, 2018 - Friday, November 2, 2018 at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis in London, Georgia. Provided below is a description of the event:

Why You Should Attend

The only national program specifically designed for those who represent family business owners!   Whether you advise or own a family business, or are an estate planner looking for a deeper understanding of the closely-held business, this one-of-a-kind advanced conference is for you!   Attend this nationally recognized program and explore the latest techniques in family business succession planning, learn how customize your plan for specific situations, and discover new ways to implement your plans.   Leading practitioners in estate planning, tax, insurance, and employee benefits will give you advanced strategies to recognize and evaluate family business issues and enhance your skills at designing customized succession plans for your family business clients.  

What You Will Learn

Highlights of this year's program include:  

Planning in light of tax reform, lower income taxes, and higher estate tax exemptions

Critical income tax issues and planning strategies, including tax-savings opportunities when passing wealth from one generation to the next

Valuing an equity interest in a family business

Motivating your family business client to engage in thoughtful succession planning

Deferred compensation and equity-based compensation plans

Advising on family harmony issues that can impact succession plans

Sophisticated trust techniques for lifetime transfers

  For in-person attendees: An optional breakfast workshop on the second morning provides an opportunity to dive deeper into income tax issues not covered during the regular program. Don't miss this chance to discuss your questions with experienced faculty in an informal setting!  

Who Should Attend

This comprehensive estate planning for family business CLE program is designed for estate lawyers, accountants, those who advise privately-owned business, and those who own private businesses.  
Register two or more and SAVE! Register one person for the in-person course at full price and save 40% on all additional in-person registrations for this course from your organization. Separate discounts are also available for group webcast registrations. Click on "Group Rates" to register. (Valid on new registrations only; discounts may not be combined.)

Study Materials

Going green in 2018! Course materials will be available in electronic format for download the week before and during the course.  Print materials will not be distributed.  All registrants are advised to bring laptops or tablets to the course to view the course materials, including updates.

July 20, 2018 in Conferences & CLE, Estate Administration, Estate Planning - Generally, Income Tax, Trusts, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

How to Leave a Legacy When You Don’t Have Children

DandelionMany people either choose to not have children or have accepted the circumstances in their lives that do not allow children to be a part of them. A question on how to leave a lasting legacy remains for those that do not have immediate heirs. Ms. Malone Wright, founder of NotAMom.com who lives in Cleveland, noted that even if you have a child, you have no way to control where your child carries your legacy; it might not be a direction you would choose.

Many people try to better the greater good by donating money or by volunteering in their local communities. Others try to make lasting impressions through their careers. you don’t have to be rich, a genius or a world-renowned luminary to touch people’s lives for generations to come. Here are some ways to leave a lasting legacy when you don’t have genetic offspring:

  • Get it in writing.
  • Preserve your family history.
  • Support institutions you find meaningful.
  • Champion worthy causes.

See Anna Goldfarb, How to Leave a Legacy When You Don’t Have Children, New York Times, July 17, 2018.

Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.) for bringing this article to my attention.

July 20, 2018 in Estate Planning - Generally, Trusts, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Article on A Critique of the American Arbitration Association's Efforts to Facilitate Arbitration of Internal Trust Disputes

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-07-20/0526006d-fde1-47e4-b716-fe020a8ce0fb.pngE. Gary Spitko published an Article entitled, A Critique of the American Arbitration Association's Efforts to Facilitate Arbitration of Internal Trust Disputes, Wills, Trusts, & Estates Law eJournal (2018). Provided below is an abstract of the Article:

The American Arbitration Association (AAA) first promulgated rules specific to wills and trusts arbitration in July 2003. The AAA subsequently has amended those rules several times, most recently in June 2012. This chapter focuses on the AAA’s June 2012 Wills and Trusts Arbitration Rules. The Introduction to the AAA Wills and Trusts Arbitration Rules points out that every year the executors of estates and the trustees of family trusts, charitable trusts, and commercial trusts administer billions of dollars’ worth of property with respect to the estates and trusts for which they serve as fiduciaries. Inevitably, disputes arise with respect to the administration of these estates and trusts and the interpretation of these wills and trust instruments. The Introduction posits that arbitration may be a suitable means for resolution of these disputes “privately, promptly, and economically, utilizing as the arbitrator a lawyer or lawyers with substantial experience in the area of wills, trusts and estates.” Implicit in the touting of these virtues of arbitration by the drafters of the AAA Wills and Trusts Arbitration Rules is the understanding that the drafters sought to promulgate rules for administering wills and trusts arbitrations that would maximize these benefits of arbitration. Moreover, implicit in the very concept of arbitration rules specific to wills and trusts arbitrations is the expectation that the drafters would consider the nature of will and trust disputes in promulgating such specialized arbitration rules and would seek to promulgate rules complementary to this nature. This chapter evaluates the AAA Wills and Trusts Arbitration Rules in light of these goals that presumably were at the center of this pioneering effort to craft rules specific to the arbitration of will and trust disputes and therefore considers the extent to which the Rules promote the private, expeditious, cost-effective, and expert resolution of will and trust disputes.

The chapter finds the Rules wanting and suggests ways in which adopters might vary the procedures set forth in the Rules to better serve the interests of a testator, settlor, or parties arbitrating a will or trust dispute. The ability to contract around the oversights and shortcomings of the AAA Wills and Trusts Arbitration Rules, however, is not a panacea. Ad hoc drafting, especially when it is extensive, incurs the risk of litigation over the meaning of the customized provisions. Indeed, a presumed virtue of adopting an arbitral organization’s rules of arbitration procedure is that the rules will have been utilized by others extensively over time and their meaning will have become settled. Thus, the AAA itself should form a study group to analyze the nature of will and trust disputes and to recommend arbitration procedures best suited to that particular nature. The AAA should then revise the AAA Wills and Trusts Arbitration Rules accordingly.

July 19, 2018 in Articles, Estate Planning - Generally, Trusts, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Florida Woman Allegedly Fatally Attacked Mother After Being Left Out of Will

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-07-19/4cbe5353-acdf-4d85-a4e8-026cb0438819.pngGabriela Perero, 53, was charged with first-degree murder and aggravated battery of a person over 65 years old after she allegedly attacked her 85 year old mother. Perero told the arresting deputies that she had gotten angry after learning that her mother was going to leave everything in her will to Perero's siblings.

The irate woman allegedly began with ransacking the house, destroying paperwork and breaking picture frames. Then she yelled out, “You destroyed my life so I’m going to destroy you!” before she pushed her elderly mother down to the ground and “ripped her skin off" of her arms. After cleaning up her mother in the bathroom, Perero put her back into her bed and called 911.

Perero claimed that she was the person that had been caring for her mother and the discovery that she was being written out of the will sent her into a rage. She is being held without bail. It is unclear whether she has entered a plea or retained an attorney.

See Harriet Sokmensuer, Florida Woman Allegedly Fatally Attacked Mother After Being Left Out of Will: 'I Beat Up My Mom', Yahoo News, July 18, 2018.

Special thanks to Jim Hartnett, Jr. (Dallas, Texas Probate Attorney) for bringing this article to my attention.

July 19, 2018 in Estate Planning - Generally, New Cases, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

CLE on Estate Planning for Farmers and Ranchers

CLEThe National Business Institute is holding a conference entitled, Estate Planning for Farmers and Ranchers, on Tuesday, July 24, 2018 at the Ramada Midtown Grand Island in Grand Island, Nebraska. Provided below is a description of the event:

Program Description

How to Protect Farm Assets and Transfer Them to Heirs

Estate planning for farms and ranches requires specialized knowledge and tools to ensure the best client representation. This legal course will give you the knowledge to preserve the farms and other assets your clients have worked their entire lives to acquire and build. Explore the challenges and opportunities unique to estate planning for farmers to help make good sense of difficult legal and financial policies. Learn what you need to know about estate taxes, wills, trusts, government programs, and other key elements. Help your clients take care of their estate planning needs and their family's future - register today!

  • Take full advantage of government farm programs and valuation discounts.
  • Explore the deciding factors in choosing the right business entity when planning ownership transfer.
  • Analyze the liquidity of farm assets and augment each plan accordingly.
  • Employ all available tools for transferring assets and preserving wealth.
  • Tackle harvest yield predictions and other unique factors of farm asset valuation.

Who Should Attend

This basic-to-intermediate level seminar is designed for:

  • Attorneys
  • Estate and Financial Planners
  • Accountants and CPAs
  • Tax Preparers
  • Trust Officers
  • Paralegals

Course Content

  1. Business Structure Choice and Conversion - Including Sample Documents
  2. Income and Gift Tax Planning
  3. Medicaid (Long-Term) Planning for Farmers and Ranchers
  4. Planning for a Gradual Transfer within the Family
  5. Transfers upon Death: Key Estate Administration Concerns

Continuing Education Credit

Continuing Legal Education – CLE: 6.00

Financial Planners – Financial Planners: 7.00

National Association of State Boards of Accountancy – CPE for Accountants/NASBA: 7.00 *

* denotes specialty credits

July 18, 2018 in Conferences & CLE, Elder Law, Estate Administration, Estate Planning - Generally, Income Tax, Trusts, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Article on Inheritance Contracts & Roman Law

RomeAleksander Grebieniow recently published an Article entitled, Inheritance Contracts & Roman Law, Wills, Trusts, & Estates eJournal (2018). Provided below is an abstract of the Article:

The use of inheritance contracts is one of the most controversial issues about the Roman Law. It is not unanimous to whether the Romans knew them, and if so, whether they have practised disposing of one’s assets in the event of death by means of an agreement. It appears that the question can’t be solved without asking, how should we understand the notion of ‘inheritance contracts’. Are the modern concepts compatible with Roman legal experience being not compatible with each other? There are though certain proofs of ‘a contract-oriented way of thinking’ of the Roman jurists. They indeed prohibited some contract having a succession over a third person for an object but were not using a broader concept of inheritance contract. The present paper is meant as a reconsideration of this topic, with particular focus on the justifiability of the research questions which have been asked until now.

July 18, 2018 in Articles, Current Affairs, Estate Planning - Generally, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Richard 'Old Man' Harrison of 'Pawn Stars' Cuts Son, Christopher, Out of His Will

HarrisonRichard 'Old Man' Harrison of the History Channel's Pawn Stars fame passed away last month at the age of 77. His will has now been filed and a 2017 amendment has come to the public light disinheriting his son, Christopher. Before he had amended the document named Harrison's wife, JoAnne, and their three children, Joseph, Rick, and Christopher as beneficiaries. Rick, who opened the Gold & Silver Pawn store with his dad in 1988 and appeared on the History series, appears to have been named as the executor.

“I would like to express my love and affection for Christopher Keith Harrison,” the document reads, “however, for purposes of this Will, I have intentionally and with full knowledge failed to provide for him and his issue.”

Rick issued a statement that, "The family had previously discussed this information and it is a private matter."

See Mariah Haas, Richard 'Old Man' Harrison of 'Pawn Stars' Cuts Son, Christopher, Out of His Will, Fox News, July 17, 2018.

Special thanks to Joel C. Dobris (Professor of Law, UC Davis School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.

Special thanks to Jim Hartnett, Jr. (Dallas, Texas Probate Attorney) for bringing this article to my attention.

July 18, 2018 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Television, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Your Mid-Year Estate Planning Checklist

BeachSummer can be a busy time with kids out of school and vacations in full swing, but it can also be a prime period to review your estate plan and see if there needs to be any adjustments. Below is a checklist that could assist to make sure you cover the essential points.

  • Review your existing Will and any trust agreements.
  • Consider whether your named fiduciaries are still appropriate.
  • Review your beneficiary designations.
  • Consider income tax planning.
  • Review existing insurance coverage (life, homeowners, umbrella, disability, long-term care, etc.).
  • Review your investments – and your investment advisors.
  • Review how your assets are titled.
  • Fund your trust(s)
  • Determine/confirm your estate tax domicile.
  • Get educated – meet with your estate planning attorney and financial professionals to discuss all of the above.

See Lisa P. Staron, July 11, 2018 - Trusts and Estates Group News: Your Mid-Year Estate Planning Checklist, Murtha Law, July 11, 2018.

Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.) for bringing this article to my attention.

July 17, 2018 in Disability Planning - Health Care, Disability Planning - Property Management, Estate Planning - Generally, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax, Gift Tax, Income Tax, Trusts, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, July 16, 2018

CLE on 30 Steps to Perfect Probate

The National Business Institute is holding a conference entitled, 30 Steps to Perfect Probate, on Thursday, October 11, 2018 - Friday, October 12, 2018, at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Jacksonville Baymeadows in Jacksonville, Florida. Provided below is a description of the event:

Program Description

Gain Valuable Strategies for Every Step of the Probate Process

Are you confident you're taking advantage of every strategic opportunity the probate process has to offer? Experienced faculty will share their insights into maximizing the benefits of each step at this essential program. With a special focus on strategic decision-making to minimize tax burdens, speed up the process and alleviate conflict; this guide to probate is just what you need to take your practice to the next level. Register today!

  • Spend two full days learning how to strategically navigate the probate process.
  • Shore up your knowledge with a tactical guide to probate inventory - and leave no stone unturned.
  • Get tips from the pros on how to tackle creditor claims and troubleshoot debt repayment.
  • Minimize tax burdens for both the decedent and the beneficiaries with a full guide to timely and prudent tax planning and reporting.
  • Maximize the use of exceptions when handling Medicaid estate recovery.
  • Hone your final disbursements skills to prevent disputes and re-openings.
  • Use probate litigation to its fullest advantage.

Who Should Attend

This two-day, intermediate level seminar is designed for:

  • Attorneys
  • Accountants/CPAs
  • Trust Officers/Administrators/Managers
  • Tax Professionals

Course Content

  1. Probate Process Overview and First Steps
  2. Executor Strategies
  3. Will Admission Techniques
  4. Inventory, Appraisement and Management Tactics
  5. Creditor Claims: Tips From the Pros
  6. Medicaid Estate Recovery Insights
  7. Insolvent Estate Tips and Tricks
  8. Tax Minimization Tactics
  9. Final Accounting Secrets
  10. Distributions: Insights From the Pros
  11. Estate Closing Strategies
  12. Legal Ethics
  13. Probate Litigation Tactics

Continuing Education Credit

Continuing Legal Education – CLE: 14.50 *

International Association for Continuing Education Training – IACET: 1.20

National Association of State Boards of Accountancy – CPE for Accountants/NASBA: 14.00 *

* denotes specialty credits

July 16, 2018 in Conferences & CLE, Estate Administration, Estate Planning - Generally, Estate Tax, Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax, Gift Tax, Income Tax, Intestate Succession, Professional Responsibility, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

3 Principles for a Successful Family Legacy

LegacyThe next few decades will see the largest transfer of wealth between generations that has yet to occur in this country and in the world. Estate planning has become a less taboo subject among high net worth families as the prospect of extending their own legacy has become more prevalent and important. Those that adhere to the following three core legacy planning strategies have more success when transitioning wealth between generations.

  • Integrate planning
    • Your legacy is as much about providing financially for future generations as it is about how you wish to be remembered, and communicating with your advisors as well as your family will help you develop a detailed wealth plan that aligns with your legacy goals.
  • Evolve a healthy family wealth culture
    • A shared set of attitudes, values, goals and behaviors that characterize you as a family to many is more valuable and important than money in and of itself. Consider the elements that define your family’s culture, and keep them in mind as you designate goals for your wealth.
  • Develop the rising generation
    • Younger generations may have difficulty distinguishing between wealth and money, and their attitudes toward each may be apparent. Be a beacon and a role model, revealing to them how thoughtful spending, investing and charitable giving contribute to a sense of purpose.

See Catherine Schnaubelt, 3 Principles for a Successful Family Legacy, Forbes, July 13, 2018.

Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.) for bringing this article to my attention.

 

July 16, 2018 in Estate Administration, Estate Planning - Generally, Non-Probate Assets, Trusts, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)