Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

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

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Warren E. Burger Prize Writing Competition

Inns

Consider entering the American Inns of Court Warren E. Burger Prize writing competition. Interested authors can be law students, professors, judges, and lawyers. They do not need to be members of the American Inns of Court. The author is asked to submit an original, unpublished essay of 10,000 to 20,000 words on a topic that addresses issues of legal excellence, civility, ethics, and professionalism.

This competition is designed to encourage outstanding scholarship that “promotes the ideals of excellence, civility, ethics and professionalism within the legal profession,” the core mission of the American Inns of Court. The author of the winning essay will receive a cash prize of $5,000 and the essay will be published in the South Carolina Law Review, and the author will be recognized at the Annual Celebration of Excellence event at the Supreme Court of the United States in Washington, DC.

The submission deadline for the 2014 Warren E. Burger Prize is July 1, 2014.  Rules for the writing competition are available on the American Inns of Court website.

March 18, 2014 in Professional Responsibility, Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

2013 Mary Moers Wenig Student Writing Competition

ACTEC_logo

The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) has announced the winners of the 2013 Mary Moers Wenig Student Writing Competition.

First Place: Christopher J. Roman (Villanova Law School) “Protecting Your Clients’ Assets from their Future Ex-Sons and Daughters-In-Law: The Impact of Evolving Trust Laws on Alimony Awards”

Second Place: Ryan Konsdorf & Scott Alden Prulhiere (Arizona State University, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law) “Killing Your Chances of Inheriting: The Problem with the Application of the Slayer Statute to Cases of Assisted Suicide”

Third Place: Emily Tornabene (Arizona State University, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law) “To Have and To Hold, and Now a QDRO”

 

Honorable Mentions:

Daniel G. Cronin (Arizona State University, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law) “Decanting Trusts: Evolving Law”

Kendal R. Dobra (University of Connecticut School of Law) “Riding the Digital Wave: An Executor’s Fiduciary Duty toward Digital Assets”

Daniel Miller (Arizona State University, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law) “How Harmless Is Harmless? An In-Depth Look Into the Harmless Error Rule”

September 18, 2013 in Appointments and Honors, Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

ACTEC Announces Mary Moers Wenig 2013 Student Writing Competition

ActecThe American College of Trust and Estate Counsel has officially announced the Mary Moers Wenig 2013 Student Writing Competition.

Here are some of the key features of this competition:

  • Large cash prizes (first place = $5,000; second place = $3,000; third place = $1,000; honorable mention cash awards may also be made).
  • A broad range of topics in the trusts and estates and related taxation areas.
  • Attractive page requirements -- the body of the paper must be 20 double-spaced pages and may not exceed 30 double-spaced pages.
  • Use of original (but unpublished) papers, including papers prepared for law school credit.
  • June 14, 2013 deadline which will allow for work over several months including spring break.
  • No limit on the number of Honorable Mention Prizes allowing entrants to have a greater chance of receiving recognition and monetary awards.
  • Papers may be coauthored.

The official rules may be found here.

March 27, 2013 in Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Encourage Students to Enter RPTE Writing Contest

Unknown-13Professors: 

Encourage your students to enter the ABA Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Student Writing Contest.

The 2013 prizes are as follows: 

1st Place
- $2,500
- Possible consideration for essay to be printed in Probate & Propertymagazine
- Free roundtrip airfare and hotel accomodations to the 2013 Fall Leadership Meeting in October to New Orleans, LA
- One year free RPTE membership

2nd Place
- $1,500
- One year free RPTE membership

3rd Place
- $1,000
- One year free RPTE membership

All essays are due June 14. Please click here to find the contest rules and entry forms. 

March 26, 2013 in Books - For the Classroom, Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Article on the National Trails System Act and Takings Jurisprudence

ImagesS. Mike Gentine (J.D. The George Washington University School of Law, 2012) recently published his article entitled Riding the Trails to Bad Law: The Inevitably Unjust Results of the National Trails System Act And Current Takings Jurisprudence, 47 Real Prop. Tr. & Est. L.J. 173 (2012).  The introduction to the article is below:

Since 1968, Congress has searched for an effective legal means to turn disused or outright abandoned rail lines into publicly accessible walking, hiking, or biking trails. Congress's first attempt was the National Trails System Act (NTSA). When this effort proved ineffective at building the hoped-for national spider web of walkability, Congress tried again, this time attempting to nudge rail companies into offering their rights-of-way for public sale by allowing the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) to delay the companies' legal abandonment of the property if they did not make the offers. This, too, was unsuccessful because companies could not possibly comply with the request; the lines were mostly on property the rail companies acquired through easements or other property rights short of fee simple, and when the railroads abandoned the lines, state property laws could require the instant return of the property to its original owners.
The next and current program, the amended NTSA, appeared in 1983. Under this scheme, when a railroad petitions for legal recognition of its abandonment of a line, anyone interested in converting that line to a public trail can apply for a Notice of Interim Trail Use or Abandonment (NITU) or a Certificate of Interim Trail Use or Abandonment (CITU). These processes operate identically and differ only in the formal classification of the underlying abandonment proceeding (for simplicity, this article will use NITU throughout to encompass both forms). An application for an NITU could result in a direct transfer to the trail operator, which may shut out the future interest holder.
At least in the Federal Circuit, the settled law for years has been that a successful negotiation under an NITU--one that transfers the easement to a trail operator rather than allowing it to revert to the future interest holder--is a taking within the meaning of the Fifth Amendment. However, cementing the idea that an NITU creates a taking left at least three related questions. First, when does the claim for a taking accrue? Second, how long does a future interest holder have to assert that claim? Third, for what portion of that intervening time is the government liable for compensation?
In a series of cases spanning six years, the Federal Circuit has answered each of these questions, but the answers have produced a troublesome reality in which both NITU negotiations and the resulting takings litigation can take several years and the total taxpayer cost of acquiring a right to walk the trails can be absurd. This article briefly discusses the Preseault cases, which led to the conclusion that an NITU does take property. Part II examines the congressional history of the NTSA. Part III discusses the development of rail line abandonment law and NTSA jurisprudence, including a thorough look at Ladd v. United States. Part IV analyzes the legal and practical flaws in that jurisprudence, most notably the functional impossibility of applying Ladd literally. Finally, Part V offers three potential solutions to this troublesome legal climate and discusses the limitations of solutions other scholars have offered.
This article proposes development (either judicial or legislative) of a compensation scheme that both better protects landowners and better accomplishes the goal of the rails-to-trails concept. This scheme will require a rethinking of Federal Circuit cases like Caldwell v. United States and Barclay v. United States and a review of Ladd. The result, hopefully, will be a legal regime in which the government fully and fairly compensates landowners pursuant to the Fifth Amendment; the litigation process is faster and simpler; and rails will be able to turn to trails more quickly.

September 25, 2012 in Articles, Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, January 27, 2012

ACTEC Announces Mary Moers Wenig 2012 Student Writing Competition

ActecThe American College of Trust and Estate Counsel has officially announced the Mary Moers Wenig 2012 Student Writing Competition.

Here are some of the key features of this competition:

  • Large cash prizes (first place = $5,000; second place = $3,000; third place = $1,000; honorable mention cash awards may also be made).
  • A broad range of topics in the trusts and estates and related taxation areas.
  • Attractive page requirements -- the body of the paper must be 20 double-spaced pages and may not exceed 30 double-spaced pages.
  • Use of original (but unpublished) papers, including papers prepared for law school credit.
  • June 1, 2012 deadline which will allow for work over several months including spring break.
  • No limit on the number of Honorable Mention Prizes allowing entrants to have a greater chance of receiving recognition and monetary awards.
  • Papers may be coauthored.

The official rules may be found here.

January 27, 2012 in Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Winners of the 2011 RPTE Law Student Writing Contest

WinnerThe American Bar Association recently released the winners of the 2011 RPTE Law Student Writing Contest. The winners are as follows:

First Place—S. Mike Gentine (George Washington University School of Law): Riding the Trails to Bad Law: The Inevitably Unjust Results of the National Trails System Act and Current Takings Jurisprudence

Second Place—Scott Boddery (Florida State University College of Law): Electronic Wills: Drawing a Line in the Sand Against Their Validity

Third Place—Brett Robinson (Pepperdine): Finding Just Compensation in Substitute Facilities

For more information on the RPTE Law Student Writing Contest, please click here.

August 24, 2011 in Articles, Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Student Writing Contest

Http___www.americanbar.org_content_dam_aba_administrative_real_property_trust_estate_2011_aba_rpte_law_student_writing_contentsThe American Bar Association is accepting entries for the Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Student Writing Contest. The contest information is below:

Attention Professors!

Inform Your Students about the ABA Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Student Writing Contest...

The Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law is now accepting entries for the 2011 Law Student Writing Contest. The contest is designed to encourage and reward law student writing on real property, trust and estate law subjects of general and current interest. All law and LL.M students currently attending an ABA-accredited law school are eligible to apply.

Direct Your Students to the Law Student Writing Contest Webpage Here.

All Essays Are Due June 24th.

1st Place

$2,500 Cash

  •   Free round-trip airfare and hotel accomodations to the RPTE Fall Leadership Meeting in Phoenix, AZ on November 3-6, 2011
  • One year free RPTE membership
  • Consideration for publication in The Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Journal

2nd Place

$1,500 Cash

3rd Place

$1,500 Cash

You don't have to be a member of the Section to enter!

 

June 18, 2011 in Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, May 2, 2011

University of Connecticut School of Law Student Legal Writing Competition

University of Connecticut School of Law The University of Connecticut School of Law established a Student Legal Writing Competition to encourage and reward original student writing on legal issues affecting persons struggling with homelessness, mental illness, addiction, or substance abuse. The goal of the contest, which offers cash prizes, is to raise awareness of these issues and to seek suggestions for improving the delivery of services to these groups.

Rules for the writing competition will be announced in September, but students who wish to start their research early may do so.  Rules for the last competition can be found here

May 2, 2011 in Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Elder Law Writing Competition for Students

NaelaThe National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) is sponsoring the Sixth Annual NAELA Elder Law Writing Competition:

  • The first place winner will receive a $1,500 first place prize and will be interviewed for a future issue of NAELA News.
  • The second place winner will receive $1,000 cash.
  • The third place winner will receive $500 cash.
  • In addition, the top eight articles will be published in NAELA Student Journal, an annual publication, and the top eight authors also will receive a complimentary one-year student membership to NAELA.

Article submissions should address any topic regarding legal issues that affect seniors or people with disabilities. The competition is designed to focus students on the issues of elder law and elder law as a legal specialty. 

Articles will be judged on originality, accuracy, research, conciseness, analysis, and clarity of style.

There is plenty of time for students to seriously consider this competition.  Entries must be submitted electronically between February 28, 2011 and May 30, 2011.

NAELA is a non-profit association that assists lawyers, bar organizations, and others who work with seniors, people with disabilities, and their families. Established in 1987, the Academy provides a resource of information, education, networking, and assistance to those who deal with the many specialized issues involved with providing legal services to the elderly and people with disabilities.

For more information, see the following link.

February 8, 2011 in Writing Competitions for Students | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)