Resources for Wealth Planning Professionals

Impact of ERISA Preemption on Estate Planning and Marital Matters


Recorded March 5, 2021  

No CLE credit for this session.

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.

ACTEC Panelists:

  • Steven E. Trytten (Moderator & Panelist), Henderson Caverly Pum & Trytten LLP, Pasadena, CA
  • Jonathan G. Lasley, Stewart, Plant & Blumenthal, LLC, Baltimore, MD
  • Alvin J. Golden, Rigby Slack Lawrence Berger Akinc Pepper & Comerford PLLC, Austin, TX

ACEBC Panelists:

  • Alden J. Bianchi, Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C., Boston, MA
  • Mark Casciari, Seyfarth Shaw LLP, Chicago, IL

AAML Panelist:

  • Kimberly R. Willoughby, Willoughby & Associates, Golden, CO