Wills & Trusts

B645 is taught by D. Gjerdingen, J. Stake

This course covers transfer of property at death. This includes probate transfers, such as wills and intestate succession, as well as nonprobate transfers such as gifts, trusts, POD accounts, and other will substitutes.

Topics include:

Intestate succession.

Execution of formal and holographic wills, as well as revocation and revival of wills.

Interpretation and construction of wills, and will contests.

Will substitutes, such as multi-party accounts, POD provisions, and gifts causa mortis.

Creation, modification, and termination of public and charitable trusts, and other specialized trusts; trust construction and interpretation.

Powers of appointment.

Restrictions on gifts, including the Rule against Perpetuities.

Fiduciary administration, including investing for trustees (and lawyers) under the Prudent Investor Rule as guided by Modern Portfolio Theory.

A brief introduction to estate planning and estate taxation, including the importance of retirement accounts in estates.

This is an introductory survey course. Students with a serious interest in practicing estate planning are encouraged to take additional courses, if offered, in Gift & Estate Tax (B651) and Estate Planning (B740).