It’s important to stay current on the latest developments in your field. This is just as true in Estate Planning and Elder Law as it is in other areas of law, or life in general. A few jurisdictions don’t require any continuing legal education at all. Those states requiring continuing legal education typically require about 12 hours per year. The American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys requires its Members to earn three times as much, 36 hours annually. Further, the Academy’s requirement may only be met by courses in Estate Planning, Tax, Elder Law, and Ethics. State CLE requirements don’t mandate the attorney to obtain the hours in their field. The Academy’s rigorous continuing education requirement ensures its Members are current and up-to-date on the latest developments.
In addition to ongoing monthly education, the Academy holds two semi-annual Summit conferences each year. At these conferences, the Members learn about Estate Planning, Elder Law, and Tax, as well as practice management techniques. Due to the pandemic, this Fall’s Summit was held via Zoom technology, just as the Spring Summit was held. We had many speakers, including national expert Professor Sam Donaldson of Georgia State University. Professor Donaldson provided a wonderful Federal Tax Update as well as an exploration of the ins and outs of the rules of Grantor Trusts.
In addition to Professor Donaldson and other speakers, I gave two presentations at the Summit. One presentation was a lively, interactive presentation titled “Quiz Show.” In that session, we explored a variety of topics, from International Estate Planning to Taxation. The other presentation looked at “Different Distributions for Different Outcomes.” That presentation explored how you would structure distributions for beneficiaries differently depending upon what you expected their situation would be.
Things change quickly in today’s fast-moving environment. Continuing education like this allows Members of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys to remain current with the latest developments in the law so they can best serve the needs of their clients.
It was great to get together with my Academy colleagues for learning and camaraderie as we stay at the forefront of Estate Planning and Elder Law. Be sure the attorney you choose for Estate Planning and Elder Law stays current with continuing education like Members of the Academy.
Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M.
Director of Education
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128
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