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Publications and Videos for Estate Planning Professionals

Spouses Dividing Retirement Plan Assets During Life

Recorded June 11, 2021

The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) is pleased to present this special joint presentation with the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML).  The panel discussed how to divide qualified retirement plans and IRAs during the life of the participant/owner;  how such a division can help a spouse in need of government benefits qualify for the benefits but increase the other spouse’s income; and selected asset protection, state death tax, and income tax planning benefits. 

Impact of ERISA Preemption on Estate Planning and Marital Matters

Recorded March 5, 2021

The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) is pleased to present this special joint presentation with the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel (ACEBC) and the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML). The panel will provide background on the Enactment of ERISA and REA and will discuss topics that include: 

  • General coverage of ERISA preemption from the perspective of a plan administrator;
  • Impact of preemption on the use of durable power of attorney by a plan participant;
  • Impact of preemption on divorce and the use of QDROs;
  • Impact of preemption on estate planning for a married couple, when a “waiver and consent” by a spouse is needed, and how it is accomplished;
  • Impact of preemption on prenuptial agreements;
  • Impact of preemption at the death of a participant, including how competing claims to death benefits are resolved, qualified disclaimers and whether the plan administrator can recognize them, common law elective share and augmented estate rules;
  • How preemption impacts community property rules.

 

2021 ACTEC Pocket Tax Tables

tax-tablesThe ACTEC Pocket Tax Tables are a handy resource and guide to frequently used tax information, revised through March 1, 2021.

This publication was compiled for the College by ACTEC Fellows Susan T. Bart and Karen S. Gerstner.

 

The Advance Directives: Counseling Guide for Lawyers

ABA-guideThe ABA Commission on Law and Aging has released a new free tool, The Advance Directives: Counseling Guide for Lawyers. Research on advance care planning shows that people talk to their lawyers as much or more often than to their doctors about advance directives. The Guide will help lawyers provide more effective health care advance directives for their clients. It provides a counseling checklist and eight practice principles through the advance care planning process, plus an extensive resource list of tools to help clients sort through their personal values, goals, and wishes regarding future health care decisions. 

2020 Emergency Remote Notarization and Witness Orders

2020-Emergency-Remote-Notary-Witness-Orders

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, ACTEC has created a quick reference list of the states that have acted to allow remote notarization and witness orders on an emergency basis.

This publication was compiled for the College by ACTEC Fellow Lauren Wolven and her colleague, Erin Mayer. 

 

ACTEC Law Journal

ACTEC Law Journal is a unique, high level academic journal which not only explores tax, trust and estate topics in depth, but deals with the practical consequences and applications of the rapidly changing rules in these areas of law. It is published three times a year and mailed free of charge to ABA-accredited law schools.

ACTEC Law Journal welcomes the submission of articles. Articles should be submitted to the editor at journal@actec.org. Potential authors are encouraged to consult ACTEC Law Journal’s Information for Authors and Author’s Agreement and ACTEC Law Journal Brief Guide to Citation Form.

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Engagement Letters

Engagement-Letters

The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel released the 3rd Edition of Engagement Letters, created by the ACTEC Professional Conduct Committee with the financial support of the Foundation. The Engagement Letters are a critical step in creating professional relationships with clients.

Rules of Professional Conduct

Model-Rules-of-Professional-Conduct

The ACTEC Commentaries on the Model Rules of Professional Conduct continues the tradition of providing guidance particular to estate and trust practitioners. The Fifth Edition update to the Commentaries takes account of amendments to the Model Rules adopted since the 2005 Fourth Edition, including those proposed by the American Bar Association Commission on Ethics 20/20 as adopted by the ABA in 2012 and 2013.

Quicken Fiduciary Accounting Templates

Templates that can be used with Quicken to effectively produce accounting reports for estates and trusts that conform to the National Accounting Standards and Model Account Formats.