Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

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

Monday, September 17, 2018

New Trusts & Estates Collaborative Research Network of Law and Society Association

Trusts & Estates Collaborative Research Network
Law and Society Association
Call for Participation – Deadline October 8, 2018

Organizers of the newly-formed Trusts & Estates Collaborative Research seek proposals that explore any aspect of the law, practice or effects of trusts and estates, broadly defined. Successful proposals likely will bear in some way on succession (also referred to as inheritance) and/or wealth transfers (whether at death or during lifetime, outright or in trust). Subjects of inquiry may involve any aspect of government or social policy with respect to trusts, estates, inheritance, wealth transfer, equity or courts with jurisdiction over these issues.

If you would like to present a paper as part of a Trusts and Estates CRN panel, please  submit a 500-word abstract by Monday, October 8, 2018 at 5:00 p.m. GMT to the CRN chairs, Professor Bridget Crawford (bcrawford at law dot pace dot edu) and Professor Kate Galloway (kgallowa at bond dot edu dot au). The CRN chairs will then attempt to organize the papers into panels with cohesive themes.

Our goal is to stimulate focused discussion of papers on which scholars are currently working.  We welcome participation from scholars working in any discipline, language, or country.  Although you may submit a proposal to present a paper that is closer to publication, we are especially interested in receiving proposals for works-in-progress that will benefit from discussion that the panels will provide. We welcome participation of junior scholars, those who are untenured or in non-tenure positions, and advanced graduate students, as well as more experienced scholars.

Participants are encouraged to apply multi-disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches in their scholarship. Possible areas in inquiry might include issues related to transfer of wealth between spouses or family members; preferences created for certain types of transfers or transfers to particular classes of individuals; the transfer of wealth to charities or non-profit organizations; generational equity; issues of social and economic inequality; comparative aspects of the law of succession and the law of trusts more broadly; the relationship between/among gender, race, sexual orientation, socioeconomic class, immigration, language status, disability and the law of succession and the law of trusts; the socio-linguistics of testation and wealth transfer; access to estate planning justice for low- and middle-income individuals; questions of cultural or group inheritance rights; and similar issues.

If you would like to submit a pre-formed panel, with a chair already named, and affiliate your panel with the Trusts and Estates CRN, please also email the CRN chairs.

In addition to individual paper presentations (to be organized into panels) and pre-formed panels, we also welcome programs that fit other formats permitted by Law and Society such as author-meets-reader sessions, salon sessions, and roundtable session.  If you have an idea that you think would work, we welcome hearing from you with a 500-word proposal.

Please note that LSA rules limit you to participating only once, either as a paper panelist or as a roundtable participant.

We will give preference to proposed Trusts and Estates CRN panelists/participants who agree also to serve as a discussant or discussant/chair for another Trusts and Estates CRN panel (those appearances do not “count” for purposes of the 1 appearance rule). Please indicate your willingness to do so in your proposal.  Your volunteering will help us to create and sustain a supportive global community of trusts and estates scholars. We will take into account expertise and topic preferences. Chairs organize the logistics of the panel, as well as moderate at the conference. Chairs will develop a 100-250 word description of the panel for inclusion in the Law and Society program. Discussants will read at least one assigned paper and prepare a short commentary to offer feedback and serve as a basis for discussion among the panelist and audience members. There may be multiple discussants for the same panel, especially if we are able to create panels that include multi-national perspectives.

Those selected by the Trusts and Estates CRN for participation in a panel or program will be informed no later than October 22, 2018.  Each participant will then need to register through the Law and Society system no later than November 7, 2018 using the panel number we assign.

500-word proposals to participate in a program sponsored by the Trusts and Estates CRN are due Monday, October 8, 2018 at 5:00 p.m. GMT to the CRN chairs, Professor Bridget Crawford (bcrawford at law dot pace dot edu) and Professor Kate Galloway (kgallowa at bond dot edu dot au).

September 17, 2018 in Conferences & CLE, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Interested in Joining Application for Trusts & Estates Collaborative Research Network?

Bridget Crawford (Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, New York) and Kate Galloway (Faculty of Law, Bond University, Australia) are preparing an application to the Law and Society Association for the formation of a Trusts & Estates Collaborative Research Network.  Here's a description of the function of the proposed network:

This CRN will provide a forum within the Law & Society Association for scholars from all disciplines who are interested in the effects on society of the law, practice and effects of succession (also referred to as inheritance) and wealth transfers (whether at death or during lifetime, outright or in trust). Subjects of inquiry may involve any aspect of government or social policy with respect to trusts, estates, inheritance, wealth transfer, equity or courts with jurisdiction over these issues. Participants are encouraged to apply multi-disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches to questions across the range of scholarship in this area: issues related to transfer of wealth between spouses or family members; preferences created for certain types of transfers or transfers to particular classes of individuals; the transfer of wealth to charities or non-profit organizations; generational equity; issues of social and economic inequality; comparative aspects of the law of succession and the law of trusts more broadly; the relationship between/among gender, race, sexual orientation, socioeconomic class, immigration, language status, disability and the law of succession and the law of trusts; the socio-linguistics of testation and wealth transfer; access to estate planning justice for low- and middle-income individuals; questions of cultural or group inheritance rights; and similar issues.

If you would like to be part of the application for the Trusts & Estates CRN, please send an email to Bridget Crawford (bcrawford at law.pace.edu) and indicate whether you are a current Law & Society member. For those who are not familiar with the operations of the LSA (very large) Annual Meeting, one principal function of the CRNs is to "bundle” papers and panels into coherent thematic programs with chairs and commentators. All who are interested are welcome to join the initial application. Non-U.S. scholars warmly encouraged to join the application.

June 13, 2018 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Article on Change is Constant in Estate Planning: Reflections of an ACTEC Law Journal Editor

0Bridget J. Crawford published an Article entitled, Change is Constant in Estate Planning: Reflections of an ACTEC Law Journal Editor, Wills, Trusts, & Estates Law eJournal (2018). Provided below is an abstract of the Article:

In this essay, the author provides a brief overview of the history of the flagship publication of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, including its past leadership, focus and multiple name changes. The author reflects on her service as editor of the ACTEC Law Journal and the importance of a commitment to publish articles of ever-increasing quality, while simultaneously ensuring that the Journal remains a venue that is inclusive, appealing and useful to all ACTEC Fellows. Although the ACTEC Law Journal explicitly names and norms itself as a law review, as opposed to a newsletter or a venue for publication of CLE materials, it is important that the publication continues to function as resource and target venue for all of the organization's Fellows. Given the reality that busy practitioners and judges simply do not have the same time in their day that academics have to write long law review articles that engage with prior scholarship, solve novel problems, and propose normative solutions and related policy concerns, during the author's editorship, she sought to create multiple opportunities for all Fellows to submit shorter pieces to the ACTEC Law Journal. This included an issue devoted to short commentaries on the estate planning jurisprudence of the Supreme Court of the United States and the inclusion in other issues of brief reviews of articles published in the ACTEC Law Journal.

May 3, 2018 in Estate Planning - Generally, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Yale Law School Center for Private Law Fellow Applications Available

Yale PrivateThe Yale Law School Center for Private Law is now accepting applications for the 2018-19 Fellow in Private Law. The Fellowship in Private Law is a full-time, one-year residential appointment, with the possibility of reappointment. The Fellowship is designed for graduates of law or related Ph.D. programs who are interested in pursuing an academic career and whose research is related to any of the Center for Private Law's research areas, which include contracts (including commercial law, corporate finance, bankruptcy, and dispute resolution), property (including intellectual property), and torts. More information is available here.

February 8, 2018 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, February 2, 2018

Managing Tax Basis in Estate Planning

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-02-02/6285f04a-96e1-480a-8331-aeff3c98b673.pngThe Northern Trust Company’s Paul S. Lee gave one of the more memorable presentations at the 2018 Heckerling Conference. His discussion focused primarily on the need for planners to manage tax basis as part of the overall estate planning process. Lee equated the applicable exclusion amount to being “free basis,” as those assets covered by the exclusion receive a step-up in basis while remaining free of the federal estate tax. Because of this, he recommends reserving the use of the applicable exclusion only to those instances where there is some chance of the exclusion being lost. A prime example of such an instance would be immediately prior to the expiration of the current exemption thresholds.

See Jordan Smith, Managing Tax Basis in Estate Planning, Wealth Management.com, January 25, 2018.

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

February 2, 2018 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Estate Tax, Gift Tax, Income Tax, New Legislation, Scholarship, Teaching | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

SEALS Trusts and Estates Proposed Programming

The following is posted at the request of Profs. Naomi Cahn and Deborah S. Gordon:

We are hoping to encourage more trusts and estates programming at the Southeastern Association of Law Schools conference, which will be held from August 6-12 in Ft. Lauderdale.  We will be proposing two discussion groups, described below, one which focuses on pedagogy and one on scholarship; please let us know if you would like to participate. In addition, please feel free to propose a panel or discussion group yourself; here is the submission information, http://www.sealslawschools.org/submissions/.

Thank you!  If you have any questions and would like to participate, then please contact Naomi Cahn, ncahn@law.gwu.edu/, and Deborah Gordon, dsg45@drexel.edu

PROPOSED DISCUSSION GROUPS

Both pedagogy and scholarship within trusts and estates are moving beyond traditional core topics.  We are proposing two plenary discussion groups that explore how pedagogy and scholarship are expanding the ways of teaching and studying trusts and estates and related doctrines. One group will address innovations in teaching, including both skills and doctrine, and teaching about topics that overlap with other areas of the  law, such as Elder Law, Family Law, Property, and Professional Responsibility; the second group will explore new scholarship.

October 17, 2017 in Conferences & CLE, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Professor Naomi Cahn to Receive the Lifetime Achievement in Family Law Award

ZzzzNaomi Cahn has been selected to receive the Lifetime Achievement in Family Law Award. The award is meant to recognize substantial scholarly contributions to the field by individuals who have made an impact in the law through their advocacy, writing, or public service. Professor Cahn will be lecturing on September 14, 2017 at the Illinois College of Law on the following: “The New ART of Family: Developments in the Law of Assisted Reproductive Technologies”

See Illinois College of Law: Family and Public Policy

September 14, 2017 in Estate Planning - Generally, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Call for Authors – Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Trusts and Estates Opinions

FeministThe U.S. Feminist Judgments Project seeks contributors of rewritten judicial opinions and commentaries for an edited collection tentatively titled, Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Trusts and Estates Opinions.  This edited volume is part of a collaborative project among law professors and others to rewrite, from a feminist perspective, key judicial decisions in the United States.  The initial volume, Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court, edited by Kathryn M. Stanchi, Linda L. Berger, and Bridget J. Crawford, was published in 2016 by Cambridge University Press.  Subsequent volumes in the series will focus on different areas of law and will be under review by Cambridge.

Volume editors Deborah Gordon, Browne C. Lewis and Carla Spivack seek prospective authors for twelve to fifteen rewritten family law opinions covering a range of topics.  With the assistance of an advisory panel of distinguished trusts and estates scholars, the editors have selected decisions that have not appeared in other Feminist Judgment volumes; potential authors are welcome to suggest opinions which do not appear on the list, but inclusion of cases not already on the list is at the sole discretion of the editors and the advisory board.   Further, as befits a T&E focused volume, authors should be prepared to rewrite cases in ways that bring into focus intersectional concerns beyond gender, such as race, class, disability, gender identity, age, sexual orientation, national origin, immigration status, and beyond. 

Proposals must be either to 1.rewrite an opinion (subject to a 10,000-word limit) or 2.comment on a rewritten opinion (4,000-word limit).  Rewritten decisions may be majority opinions, dissents, or concurrences.  Authors of rewritten opinions should abide by the law and precedent in effect at the time of the original decision. Commentators should explain the original court decision, how the feminist judgment differs from the original judgment, and what difference a feminist judgment might have made.  The volume editors conceive of feminism broadly and invite applications that seek to advance, complicate, or critique feminist ideas and advocacy. To apply, please attach a brief cv and please rank three choices from the list.  

List of Cases: 

  1. In re Strittmater's Estate, 53 A.2d 205 (N.J. 1947) (insane delusion)
  2. In re Will of Moses, 227 So. 2d at 831 (Miss. 1969) (undue influence)
  3. Estate of Wilson, 452 N.E.2d 1228 (N.Y. 1983) (charitable trust)
  4. Cruzan v. Missouri Dep’t of Health, 497 U.S. 261 (1990)
  5. Metro. Life Ins. Co. v. Fogle, 419 S.E.2d 825, 826 (S.C. Ct. App. 1992) (slayer)
  6. O'Neal v. Wilkes, 439 S.E.2d 490 (Ga. 1994) (equitable adoption)
  7. Via v. Putnam, 656 So. 2d 460 (Fla. 1995) (pretermitted spouses, mutual wills, and dower)
  8. Estate of Myers, 594 N.W.2d 563 (Neb. 1999) (elective share and inter vivos trust)
  9. Egelhof v. Egelhof, 532 U.S. 141 (2001) (ERISA preemption)
  10. Drevenik v. Nardone, 862 A.2d 635 (Super. Ct. Pa. 2004) (spendthrift trust and child support)
  11. Reece v. Elliot, 208 S.W.3d 419, 423 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2006) (antenuptial agreement)
  12. Khabbaz v. Comm’r Soc. Sec. Admin., 930 A2d 1180 (N.H.2007) (reproductive technology)
  13. Karsenty v. Schoukroun, 959 A.2d 1147 (Md. 2008) (elective share) 

Submit proposals to B.C.LEWISnull@csuohio.nulledu.no later than Friday, September 29, 2017.  The editors will notify accepted authors and commentators by Monday, October, 30, 2017.

The editors are committed to including a diverse group of authors in the volume. The Feminist Judgments Project is committed to including authors and commentators from diverse backgrounds. If you feel an aspect of your personal identity is important to your participation, please feel free to include that in your expression of interest.

First drafts of rewritten opinions will be due on Friday, February 2, 2018.  First drafts of commentaries will be due on Friday, March 9, 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact Carla Spivack, at cspivack@okcu.edu, Deborah S. Gordon at deborah.s.gordon@drexel.edu, or Browne C. Lewis at B.C.LEWISnull@csuohio.nulledu.

August 30, 2017 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Announcing the 2017-2019 class of RPTE Fellows

PattonThe Real Property, Trust, and Estate Law (RPTE) section of the American Bar Association (ABA) sponsors a fellowship program designed to encourage young lawyers to become actively engaged in the section. The program seeks to develop these men and women into future leaders by involving them in substantive work occurring within RPTE. To accomplish this, RPTE fellows are paired with a committee chair who serves as their mentor. The mentor maintains an obligation to expose the fellow to all aspects involved in committee membership. Additionally, fellows are involved in various RPTE projects of import: writing for RPTE publications, attending leadership meetings, becoming section liaisons, and becoming engaged members of the Membership Committee are some of the tasks fellows may undertake. For the 2017-19 bar years, the following individuals have been selected to represent the RPTE section as Trust & Estate Fellows: Abigail Rosen, Caryn Friedman, Danielle Kincaid, Kelly Perez, and Jordan Veurink.

See RPTE Leadership Meeting, American Bar Association, 2017.

August 17, 2017 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Professor Alfred Brophy a 2017 Frederick Douglass Book Prize Finalist

1478The Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at the MacMillan Center has chosen Alfred Brophy as a finalist for the 2017 Frederick Douglass Book Prize for “University, Court, and Slave: Pro-Slavery Thought in Southern Colleges and Courts and the Coming of Civil War” (Oxford University Press). Professor Alfred Brophy teaches at The University of Alabama School of Law in the fields of trusts, estates, property, and remedies. Professor Brophy received his J.D. from Columbia University and his Ph.D. from Harvard University.

The Frederick Douglass Book Prize represents one of the most highly sought-after awards relating to the study of the African-American experience. The $25,000 prize is given annually to the winner of the award as recognition for the best book on slavery, abolition, and/or resistance published in the preceding year.

See 2017 Frederick Douglass Book Prize Finalists Announced, Yale Macmillan Center, August 1, 2017.

August 8, 2017 in Books, Estate Planning - Generally, Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)