Estate Planning Fundamentals

6 Credits: Specialized Knowledge


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Estate Planning Fundamentals

Course Level
CPE Credits

6 Credits: Specialized Knowledge

Course Description

The ‘Estate Planning Fundamentals’ self-study CPE course offers a detailed exploration of the essential elements of estate planning, tailored to provide tax, accounting, and finance professionals with the knowledge to effectively manage and distribute assets. This CPE course stands out by not only covering the basics but also delving into the specifics of estate planning tools. You’ll gain insights into the types of liquid assets, the use of disinheritance, and the rules associated with 529 plans. The CPE course outlines the requirements for creating a will and the steps involved in the probate process, highlighting when probate can be beneficial. You’ll learn about the structure and benefits of living trusts, the workings of joint tenancy arrangements, and the advantages of the pay-on-death option. Life insurance policies, IRAs, estate valuation for tax purposes, and the intricacies of gift taxes are also thoroughly examined. Additionally, the course provides clarity on the use of different types of trusts, the process of disclaiming an inheritance, and the rules for family partnerships. By the end of this self-study CPE course, you’ll not only understand the theory behind estate planning but also be able to apply this knowledge in practical scenarios, enhancing your professional capabilities and confidence in handling complex estate planning issues.

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Learning Objectives

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

  • Identify the issues that can impact your estate planning goals.
  • Specify the types of liquid assets.
  • Describe the clauses that can be included in a will.
  • Identify how the disinheritance concept is used.
  • Specify the rules associated with a 529 plan.
  • Identify the requirements for the creation of a will.
  • Recall the steps involved in the probate process.
  • Specify when the probate process can be useful.
  • Describe the structure and contents of a living trust.
  • Specify how a joint tenancy arrangement works.
  • Specify the problems with a joint tenancy arrangement.
  • Recall the advantages of the pay-on-death option.
  • Recall the best circumstances for purchasing life insurance.
  • Identify the different types of life insurance policies.
  • Recall the characteristics of the different types of IRA.
  • Recall how an estate is valued for estate tax purposes.
  • Specify the types of transactions that can trigger a gift tax.
  • Identify the rules relating to the gift tax exclusion.
  • Recall the nature of a present interest.
  • Specify the uses to which the different types of trusts can be put.
  • Identify the circumstances under which you might disclaim an inheritance.
  • Recall the IRS rules for including a family member in a family partnership.
  • Specify what triggers a springing power of attorney.
  • Identify the nature of any reports that a trustee might need to send to beneficiaries.
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Course Specifics

Course ID
Revision Date
January 2, 2024

There are no prerequisites.

Advanced Preparation


Number of Pages

Compliance Information

NASBA Provider Number: 103220

CFP Notice: Not all courses that qualify for CFP® credit are registered by Western CPE. If a course does not have a CFP registration number in the compliance section, the continuing education will need to be individually reported with the CFP Board. For more information on the reporting process, required documentation, processing fee, etc., contact the CFP Board. CFP Professionals must take each course in it’s entirety, the CFP Board DOES NOT accept partial credits for courses.

Meet The Experts

Steven M. Bragg, CPA, is a full-time book and course author who has written more than 300 business books and courses. He provides Western CPE with self-study courses in the areas of accounting and finance, with an emphasis on the practical application of accounting standards and management techniques. A sampling of his courses include the The New Controller Guidebook, The GAAP Guidebook, Accountants’ Guidebook, and Closing the Books: An Accountant’s Guide. He also manages the Accounting Best Practices podcast. Steven has been the CFO or controller of both public and private companies and has been a consulting manager with Ernst & Young and …