Focus Series
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Our unique Focus Series will explore planning with trusts, including the application of the Net Investment Income Tax, the effective use of special needs trusts, considerations in trustee selection, the use of Lifetime QTIPs, naming trusts as beneficiaries of retirement plans, employing CRTs and CLTs, recent cases involving fiduciaries, and using trust-to-trust transactions to rejuvenate irrevocable trusts.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016 (2:00 – 2:50 p.m.)
Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark – Navigating Trusts Through the NIIT


Robert A. Romanoff

Trustee selection and trust design can dramatically affect the application of the Net Investment Income Tax under section 1411 to trusts. This presentation will focus on the application of the NIIT to trusts and will review strategies to avoid or minimize imposition of an additional 3.8% tax.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016 (9:00 – 9:50 a.m.)
Special Needs—Special Trusts: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your Clients and You!


Bernard A. Krooks

Special needs trusts and special needs planning are becoming increasingly more complex and important. More and more clients have family members with special needs who could benefit from a properly constructed estate plan. Even high-net-worth clients are not immune from having to deal with these issues. This session will focus on the different types of special needs trusts available, when each should be used, and relevant tax considerations. Drafting tips, as well as traps for the unwary, will also be discussed.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016 – Special Session I-A (2:00 – 3:30 p.m.)
Make, Remake and Remodel – Trust Design and Redesign to Minimize Taxes and Maximize Family Wealth


Robert A. Romanoff, Suzanne L. Shier

Trust design and the modification of existing trusts can at once accomplish significant tax savings, preserve family wealth and accomplish a client’s non- tax wealth planning goals. This presentation will focus on the intersection of income tax, gift and estate tax, and non-tax objectives in drafting trusts and crafting strategies to modify existing trusts.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016 – Special Session I-D (2:00 – 3:30 p.m.)
Sophisticated Special Needs Trust Drafting and Administration Issues


Bernard A. Krooks, Robert B. Fleming, Lawrence A. Frolik

This session will examine various options available to practitioners when drafting special needs trusts as well as how to address issues that arise during the administration of the trusts. The differences between first party SNTs and third party SNTs will be analyzed, along with recommendations on how to avoid problems during administration.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016 – Special Session II-A (3:50 – 5:20 p.m.)
Review of the Past Year’s Significant, Curious, or Downright Fascinating Fiduciary Cases (at least it seems to me)


Dana G. Fitzsimons, Jr.

This session will review recent cases from across the country to assist fiduciaries and their advisors in identifying and managing contemporary fiduciary challenges.


Thursday, January 14, 2016 (9:50 – 10:40 a.m.)
The Trustee Selection Minefield


Mark R. Parthemer

This session will explore key tax and non-tax considerations in navigating trustee selection to avoid adverse surprises by identifying optimal fiduciary appointments. Problems can arise under sections 2036, 2038, 2041; situs; self-dealing…don’t blame the IRS (or others) if you aren’t paying enough attention to avoid the dangers!


Thursday, January 14, 2016 (10:55 – 11:45 a.m.)
Diamonds in the Rough: Rejuvenating Stale Irrevocable Trusts Through Trust-To-Trust Transfers


Nancy G. Henderson

An existing irrevocable trust no longer serving a client’s estate planning objectives may fall to the wayside and become stagnant. However, such old and cold trusts can be diamonds in the rough that simply need a little polish to shine again. This session will examine in-depth the use of trust-to-trust transfer techniques such as loans, guarantees, purchases, consolidations, distributions, joint investments, and preferred partnerships, among others, to rejuvenate existing inter-vivos and testamentary irrevocable trusts to assist the client in meeting his or her new estate planning goals.


Thursday, January 14, 2016 (11:45 a.m. – 12:35 p.m.)
Lifetime QTIPs: Why Should They Be Ubiquitous in Estate Planning?


Richard S. Franklin

Lifetime QTIPs are increasingly the strategy of choice for exclusion use, but these versatile trusts also facilitate minority interest valuation savings, asset protection, gift tax valuation protection, sales to defective “grantor” trusts, and more. This session will provide ideas for specific uses of Lifetime QTIPs and practical implementation guidance.


Thursday, January 14, 2016 – Fundamentals Program (2:00 – 5:20 p.m.)
The Nuts and Bolts of Charitable Remainder and Charitable Lead Trusts: Tax Rules, Drafting Guidelines, and Creative Planning Ideas


Michele A.W. McKinnon, Richard L. Fox

Charitable remainder and lead trusts offer significant income and transfer tax benefits, while enabling a donor to achieve philanthropic and personal objectives. Effective use of CRTs and CLTs requires an understanding of the applicable tax laws and the planning opportunities as well as careful attention to drafting and administration. For each type of trust, this program will address (1) the tax rules and the creative planning opportunities, (2) the IRS sample forms and appropriate modifications, (3) the application of the private foundation and unrelated business income tax rules, and (4) proper administration and tax filings.


Thursday, January 14, 2016 – Special Session III-A (2:00 – 3:30 p.m.)
IRD Meets DNI: Everything You Need to Know About Trusts Named as Beneficiary of Retirement Benefits


Natalie B. Choate

From the basics (how to title the account) to sophisticated tax planning (avoiding the separate share rule) to practical tips (which account do you pay the trustee’s fee from?), make your retirement benefits-trust experiences less stressful and more rewarding.


Thursday, January 14, 2016 – Special Session III-B (2:00 – 3:30 p.m.)
A Deeper Scrutiny of the Trustee Selection Minefield


Mark R. Parthemer, Edward F. Koren

This session will further explore the tax and non-tax factors that should be considered in order to avoid adverse surprises in making fiduciary appointments. Don’t blame the IRS (or others) if you aren’t paying enough attention to avoid the dangers!


Thursday, January 14, 2016 – Special Session III-C (2:00 – 3:30 p.m.)
Lifetime QTIPs: Tax and Asset Protection Strategies and Post-Divorce Concerns


Richard S. Franklin, Barry A. Nelson

The panel will explore tax and asset protection uses of Lifetime QTIPs, analyze income tax and marital law consequences of divorce and compare Lifetime QTIPs to other estate planning alternatives.


Thursday, January 14, 2016 – Special Session IV-A (3:50 – 5:20 p.m.)
Problem Irrevocable Trusts: If It Is Broken, Then Do Fix It


Nancy G. Henderson, Michael M. Gordon

As a result of the passage of time and changed circumstances, trustees and beneficiaries of an irrevocable trust can become frustrated by constraints imposed under the trust instrument or applicable state law. This session will explore the various tools available to amend an otherwise irrevocable trust agreement to better fulfill the objectives of the grantor, to improve the trust administration and to maximize the value of the trust to the beneficiaries. The discussion will include judicial modification and reformation actions, mergers, divisions, non-judicial settlement agreements, administrative situs changes, and decantings.

Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning
University of Miami School of Law, 1311 Miller Drive, Room C-423, Coral Gables, FL 33146
Telephone: 305-284-4762   |   Fax: 305-284-6752   |   Email: