There are no prerequisites.

Course Description

This is the most comprehensive estate and gift taxation course around. By integrating federal taxation with overall financial planning, The Complete Guide to Estate and Gift Taxation provides useful, well-rounded strategies you can use immediately in your practice. The materials explore tax strategies relating to the central financial tactics of wealth building, capital preservation, and estate distribution. Learn about will and trust forms along with living wills, durable powers of attorney, and nominations of conservator. Other key topics covered include living trusts, gifts, marital property, and probate avoidance. The result is a unified explanation of tax-economics that will permit the tax professional to locate, analyze, and solve financial concerns.


Danny Santucci, JD

Danny Santucci, BA, JD, is a prolific author of tax and financial books and articles. His legal career started with the business and litigation firm of Edwards, Edwards, and Ashton. Later he joined the Century City entertainment firm of Bushkin, Gaims, Gaines, and Jonas working for many well-known celebrities. In 1980, Danny established the law firm of Santucci, Potter, and Leanders in Irvine, California. With increasing lecture and writing commitments, Danny went into sole practice in 1995. His practice emphasizes business taxation, real estate law, and estate planning. Speaking to more than 100 groups nationally each year, he is known for spicing up his extensive expertise with an incredible sense of humor.

Course Specifics

Jun 1, 2017
There are no prerequisites.

Compliance Information

IRS Provider #: 0MYXB
IRS Course ID: 0MYXB-T-00417-13-S
IRS Federal Tax Law Credits: 32
CTEC Provider #: 2071
CTEC Course ID: 2071-CE-0452
CTEC Federal Tax Law Credits: 32
Qualifies for CA Fraud: No

Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, participants will be able to:

Chapter 1

  • Identify myths of retirement, short-term financial goals, and investment purposes
  • Recognize the importance of defining, listing, and prioritizing realistic goals, taking into account how investing changes with age
  • Identify ways to hold title to assets, noting applicable tax consequences
  • Identify the tax benefits and drawbacks of co-tenancies, corporations (both C & S), partnerships, qualified retirement plans, and trusts particularly as they relate to a client's after-tax investment return
  • Recognize the income needs and expense costs of retirement, the impact of retirement planning postponement, and the importance of early retirement planning
  • Recognize the purpose of savings, how much should be saved, and strategies to help save

Chapter 2

  • Identify goals of money management, types of income, causes of increased taxable income for itemizing taxpayers, and types of taxable income
  • Recognize how tax-free municipal bonds and fringe benefits generate tax-free income, the benefits of tax deferral, and tax-deferred investments that permit taxpayers to better invest for retirement
  • Recognize ways to shelter income, noting how income sheltering amplifies investment return
  • Recognize the process and strategies of budgeting income into cash
  • Recognize how to convert income into assets by purchasing investments and important asset acquisition rules for improved investment return
  • Recognize major tax-advantage investments, basic management rules, and the economic impact of accelerating deductions, postponing tax liability, and leveraging

Chapter 3

  • Identify obstacles that prevent or delay the preservation of wealth
  • Identify various spending habits and ways to track spending, noting how to design a budget to increase discretionary income
  • Recognize the usage of a balance sheet to analyze net worth, take an asset inventory listing liabilities, and identify where changes must be made to meet financial goals
  • Recognize the importance of individuals taking primary responsibility for investment planning and allocating financial resources among investments to maximize return
  • Recognize the impact of inflation and risk versus return, noting basic income tax planning tactics that can be used by clients to minimize taxes

Chapter 4

  • Recognize the benefits of tax deferral, the former use of tax deferral under §1034, and the deferral elements and advantage under §1031
  • Identify related party §1031 restrictions and recommendations for the protection of exchange participants
  • Recognize the history of the personal and multiple property regulations clarifying the unique personal property like-kind and netting requirements for multiple asset exchanges
  • Recognize the evolution of §1031 delayed exchanges, types of allowable transfers, replacement property within statutory deadlines, applicable safe harbors, methods to secure exchange party performance, and the §1031 partnership underlying asset rule
  • Identify types of retirement plans, the steps in designing a retirement plan, and the methods for providing for retirement, noting the evaluation of near-retirement investments
  • Recognize the requirements for an installment, including how to elect out of the installment method, variables affecting §453 availability, and how to use a property option to receive income and postpone tax

Chapter 5

  • Identify tax saving credits, their limitations, and restrictions
  • Recognize the estimated tax rules and procedures including deadlines and underpayment penalties, as well as the economics of overpaying estimated taxes
  • Recognize the deductibility of personal interest, investment interest, prepaid interest, points, and prepayment penalties, and the characteristics of offsetting passive income with rental property mortgage interest
  • Recognize the deductions for business vehicle operating costs, the allocation of expenses based on §162 usage, the requirement to retain valid expense and mileage records, and potential depreciation traps when purchasing a vehicle
  • Specify the requirements for business expenses to meet the directly related test, the elements of the associated test, business expense statutory exceptions, and the requirements of applying R.R. 90-23 and R.R. 99-7 to the deduction for transportation costs to a temporary work location
  • Recognize the application of business asset depreciation using both ACRS and MACRS recovery classes
  • Identify the sources of §172 net operating losses (NOLs), carryback and carryover rules, and tax breaks for nonitemizing taxpayers
  • Specify the ramifications of filing an amended return, how to avoid audits by claiming refunds for provable items, and how to determine which return amendments are safest

Chapter 6

  • Identify the formats for income splitting
  • Recognize the tax treatment of employee and self-employed business expenses, changes made to home office deduction under TRA '97, and the ability of making annual deductible contributions to a Keogh plan by self-employed individuals
  • Recognize the capacity to maximize available tax opportunities for an unincorporated business through retirement plans, hiring family members, travel expenses, casualty losses, bad debts, and self-employment tax
  • Recognize the uses and tax characteristics of regular and S corporations including circumstances when incorporation is desirable, the taxation of these entities, their ability to split income, initial §351 formation and capitalization issues, and appropriate tax form filings
  • Recognize the use of partnerships to split income among partners specifically including the use of §704(e) family partnerships and the consequences of gifting a partnership interest to a child or to another family member
  • Recognize techniques to set up a custodianship to split income and contain the 'kiddie tax,' including planning considerations and examples of good investments for children
  • Identify applicable deductions, credits, benefits, and drawbacks for childcare, education, children, §7872 loans, and gifts

Chapter 7

  • Recognize tax elimination techniques including the §121 home sale exclusion, tax-free state or local obligations such as private activity bonds, and family transactions such as gifts, bequests, inheritances, life insurance, and divorce
  • Identify the characteristics of fringe benefits and ways to maximize employer deductions and increase tax-free incentive-based compensation for employees through either excluding fringe benefits or adopting popular employee fringe benefits
  • Recognize how to value fringe benefits according to IRS regulations, comply with ERISA requirements, properly report reimbursed and unreimbursed business expenses under accountable and nonaccountable plans, substantiate auto expenses using a fixed and variable rate, and determine eligibility for retirement benefits exempt from social security taxes

Chapter 8

  • Identify goals and reasons for asset protection, when to plan to protect assets, and situations that can unexpectedly put assets and financial security at stake
  • Recognize potential objections to shielding assets from creditors, sources of lawsuits, and exploding and imploding liability
  • Identify ways to implement asset protection using the primary concepts of insurance, asset placement, and statutory protections
  • Identify the types of creditors associated with asset protection and fraudulent transfers
  • Recognize the fraudulent transfer laws, the 'badges' of fraud, statute of limitations, criminal penalties, and permissible asset transfers
  • Recognize which assets should be reported on a balance sheet, how to determine asset values, and how to prepare a balance sheet
  • Identify the types of insurance and buy-sell agreements, the roles of involved parties, and applicable reasons for establishing asset protection through these elements
  • Recognize the asset protection characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages of ownership formats and entities such as S corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, trusts, co-tenancy, retirement plans, custodianship, and estates
  • Identify the formats that courts typically follow if a couple does not have an enforceable premarital agreement, the reasons for post-nuptial and premarital agreements, and their relation to divorce settlements and divisions

Chapter 9

  • Identify the basic elements of estate planning
  • Recognize key participants in an estate planning team and in estate administration, noting their roles in estate planning, the importance of well-drafted legal documents and how to go about drafting them, and where changes may be necessary in an estate plan
  • Recognize the probate process, ways to transfer property or money outside the probate system or by using a trust, and the use of estate planning techniques and devices to pass more wealth to survivors and save death taxes while retaining maximum control where possible

Chapter 10

  • Identify potential death taxes and their characteristics, including the federal estate tax as it applies to various size estates, principal taxes that impact how individuals are taxed at death, and the expiration of the state death tax credit
  • Recognize the definition of a taxable estate under §2501, what assets are included in a gross estate, the basic categories of property and transfers, and the roles of participants
  • Specify the estate deductions allowed under federal estate tax law and their tax advantages and disadvantages
  • Recognize the value of a decedent's assets taking into account the advantage of permitted elections, the use of the Form 706 to pay any estate tax due, the tax basis of estate assets, and how common transactions affect property basis under §1014
  • Recognize the advantages of gift planning, the impact of GST, the steps to compute gift tax, the gift tax exclusion amount, and the value of different types of gifts including split gifting for spouses
  • Recognize the various gift tax exclusions, the treatment of below-market loans, the gift tax marital deduction requirements, the tax consequences of giving various assets, factors to consider when gifting, and the use of Form 709 to compute and pay federal gift tax

Chapter 11

  • Identify the types of wills and their functions, types of bequests and their purpose, and the duties of executors and guardians
  • Specify ways to hold title and their tax ramifications
  • Recognize the importance of a properly drafted will, the distribution flow of simple wills, and the process of probate proceedings

Chapter 12

  • Identify the four party relationship of a trust, reasons to establish a trust, and the types of trusts and their estate planning function
  • Recognize recommended living trust provisions, the application of gift and income tax considering the grantor trust and unlimited marital deduction rules, and the difference between 'A-B' and 'A-B-C' trust formats

Chapter 13

  • Identify the nine basic tax and legal title formats
  • Recognize the characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages of holding property in a sole proprietorship, a corporation, or an S corporation and how to avoid associated title pitfalls
  • Recognize the title holding benefits of trusts, co-tenancy, partnerships, and limited liability companies and the tax characteristics of each
  • Identify the characteristics of the three types of retirement plans used to provide lifetime benefits to a business owner and to employees
  • Recognize the tax treatment of custodianships and a probate estate

Chapter 14

  • Identify the terminology associated with life insurance, the different persons in which rights are placed by life insurance, and reasons to purchase life insurance
  • Recognize the tax treatment of life insurance proceeds including premiums for personally owned life insurance and lifetime benefits, applicable exceptions, variables that influence whether life insurance is taxable for federal estate tax purposes, and the gift tax associated with transfers of life insurance policies
  • Identify the types of life insurance policies (and their variations), their characteristics and reasons for establishment, and the factors to consider when establishing an irrevocable life insurance trust in order to achieve estate tax planning advantages
  • Recognize the characteristics, tax, and legal advantages between deferred annuities and private annuities, and an entity purchase agreement and a cross purchase agreement

Chapter 15

  • Identify reasons why a business interest must be valued in an estate that is subject to federal estate tax, factors used to determine the net value of a business under the regulations, and the valuation factors in R.R. 59-60 including their impact
  • Recognize how tangible assets are normally valued, including those assets whose valuation is based on values other than book value, the steps contained in R.R. 68-609's valuation formula for intangible assets, and the effect such amount can have on the total value of a business
  • Recognize the special business valuation issues and redemptions under §303 including the repealed qualified family-owned business estate tax deduction, the terms of the election that allows clients to exclude from their taxable estate 40% of the value of land subject to a qualified conservation easement, and the §303 exception to the dividend treatment of redemptions and how to qualify
  • Identify the basic elements and purpose of buy-sell agreements, stock redemptions, stock recapitalizations, and deferred compensation agreements in order to dispose of business interests before death

Chapter 16

  • Recognize the benefits of an estate freeze and its ability to reduce the value of a business interest
  • Identify the types of transactions to which Chapter 14 rules apply, terminology used in the Chapter 14 valuation rule that applies to corporations and partnerships, and exceptions to §2701
  • Recognize the components of the 'zero value' rule under §2701 including taxable events, exceptions, tax consequences, transfer tax, electing into or out of qualified payment treatment, and the valuation of junior equity interest and of other rights held together with an extraordinary payment right
  • Recognize the components of other provisions of §2701 including capital contribution, redemption, recapitalization, attribution rules, transfer tax adjustments, applicable inclusions in the gross estate, splitting an applicable retained interest, and the use of the subtraction method to determine an amount of a gift resulting from a transfer
  • Recognize the terminology defined in §2702 concerning transfers of interests in trust, the application of the zero-value rule to a transfer of interest in trust, exceptions to §2702, and the treatment of an interest in property and joint purchases
  • Specify the requirements and exceptions of §2703 to insure property is valued appropriately
  • Recognize key terminology of §2704 that clarifies valuation rules, the treatment of lapses, and which lapses or restrictions qualify as an applicable restriction

Chapter 17

  • Recognize the characteristics and benefits of estate management techniques to manage assets in an estate for the elderly and disabled including joint tenancy, conservatorship, durable power, and revocable living trusts
  • Identify the basic eldercare benefits of Medicare, Medicaid, and Supplemental Security Income, the disadvantages of the Medicaid program, how to determine income and divide assets into separate groups, and the dangers and benefits of gifting to family members
  • Specify the use and benefits of private insurance as a short-term solution for catastrophic illness and tools that can allow patients to refuse treatment even when incompetent
  • Recognize the components of Supplemental Security Income and how SSI relates to elderly and disability planning, noting the requirements that must be met in order to receive disability benefits

Chapter 18

  • Recognize how to strengthen post-mortem estate planning in the face of funeral and administrative expenses by using elections and disclaimers
  • Identify the due dates of three federal forms, the filing requirements of the decedent's estate tax form, and the three exceptions to the general rule of estate tax payment
  • Recognize the processes and procedures necessary to the preparation and timely filing of the Form 706
  • Recognize the filing requirements for estate income tax returns and for the decedent's final income tax return including how to figure the estate income tax using any of the available tax accounting methods and tax years to reduce tax liability, and the requirements for filing Form 1310 for the decedent or a joint return for the decedent and the surviving spouse
  • Recognize the totality of income be included on the decedent's final income tax return using any available exemptions or deductions
  • Recognize how to avoid penalties by timely filing a gift tax return, use gift splitting to reduce gift taxes, special gift applications, and traps to avoid incurring tax consequences

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