Last Week in Estate Planning (September 11 to September 17, 2011)

September 20, 2011
6125145054 6bc2bc1dcf m1 Last Week in Estate Planning (September 11 to September 17, 2011)

Image by DonkeyHotey via Flickr

This past April top estate planning blogger David A. Shulman, Esq. opined that “[t]he #1 Estate Planning blog is and continues to be Texas Tech Univ. School of Law Professor Gerry Beyer’s ‘Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog.’  It is, and continues to be, essential reading for anyone in the profession.”

This past week, I received what I consider a high honor – one of my posts was referenced in Professor Beyer’s blog.  Even better, after I thanked him by email, Professor Beyer quickly responded with an affable and appreciative note.  How refreshing – a gentleman, a scholar, and a nice guy!

As I seem to do every week, I once again link to several of the good Professor’s posts below.

Top Posts and Articles of the Week

Post of the Week

Act While You Can, John Dedon, Esq., Dedon on Estate Planning.

  • The Democratic members of the recently-created Super Committee recently released a summary of its proposals to reduce the federal deficit.  Mr. Dedon’s informative post highlights the estate and gift tax portions of the report.
  • This post represents the great usefulness of legal blogging and the excellence of Mr. Dedon’s fine blog itself – he describes a recent legal development in easy-to-understand terms and how it could apply in your situation. 

Special Mentions

Two of last week’s top posts come from two bloggers who have made triumphant returns from recent surgeries.  I am quite happy to see both gentlemen healthy and back in action:

Closing the Only-Recently-Insolvent Estate, Joel Schoenmeyer, Esq., Death and Taxes Blog.

Estate Planning for the Gun Owner, Alex Bajwa, Esq.,

Other Honorable Mentions

Elusive IRS Form 8939 Not Due Until January 2012, and Other IRS Tales, Julie Garber, Esq., About Wills & Estate Planning.

  • Once again, Ms. Garber clearly describes the latest fun regarding the IRS’s release and the ever-changing due dates for filing various important estate and gift tax forms.

IRS Cracking Down on Gift Tax Cheaters, Prof. Gerry Beyer, Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog – citing Gift Tax Cheaters Beware!,  Stephanie Spinucci, The LBH Blog.

  • Ms. Spinucci cites the 15 states where the IRS has audited specific real estate transactions in search of gift tax violators thus far.

Man Jailed After Targeting Facebook Memorial Pages, Megan Connolly, Toronto Trusts and Estates Monitor.

Sleeps With The Fishes, Sabrina Winters, Esq., NC Estate Planning Attorney Blog.

  • Ms. Winters on the rarely-discussed procedures for burials at sea.

Trial & Heirs’ Top 5 Reasons To Beware Joint Ownership, Danielle Mayoras, Esq. and Andrew Mayoras, Esq., The Probate Lawyer Blog:  Famous Fortune Fights!

Scholarly / Professional Interest

A-B Disclaimer Trusts, Prof. Gerry Beyer, Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog – citing The Bypass Trust is Obsolete:  Now What?, William H. Byrnes and Robert Bloink, AdvisorOne.

  • A brief description of the use of A-B Disclaimer Trusts as a possible alternative to the traditional Marital Deduction – Credit Shelter Trust setup. 
  • The disclaimer allows the surviving spouse to choose to reject a portion of the deceased spouse’s estate.  If the survivor elects to do so, the rejected or “disclaimed” assets are used to fund the credit shelter, or “B”, portion of the trust.
  • This option allows the survivor more flexibility – an election not to disclaim assets will allow the survivor greater control of the decedent’s estate (but at the potential risk of losing the benefits of “portability” if it does not last beyond 2012).

Patient “Resided” at Long-Term Care Facility at the Time of Death, Prof. Gerry Beyer, Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog.

  • Coverage of a recent Maryland case where the patient’s final residence was in dispute.

As always, please nominate any top estate planning posts or articles for the week of September 18 to September 24, 2011 in the Comments section below.  Have a great week!

 Last Week in Estate Planning (September 11 to September 17, 2011)
 Last Week in Estate Planning (September 11 to September 17, 2011)


Scott R. Zucker, Esq. is the owner of The Zucker Law Firm PLLC, located just outside the Capital Beltway in Annandale, within five miles of the City of Fairfax, the county seat of beautiful Fairfax County, Virginia. The firm focuses mainly on estate planning services for Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania clientele, and seeks to do so in an affordable and approachable way. People interested in learning more can contact Scott by phone or email.

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