ITEM #:  1033222101   |   EVENT CODE:  362879

You may use your Pass to register for the live webcast at no charge.

Monday, June 7, 2021 - Tuesday, June 8, 2021

8:15 AM - 4:30 PM   |   Check-In:  7:30 AM

In-Person Passholders – You may use your Pass to register for the live webcast at no charge.

2021 Probate and Trust Law Section Conference

Focused on New Developments, Practical Advice and Best Practices!

Minnesota’s Biggest and Best Estate Planning Event Is All Online in 2021!
Powered by the EventMobi platform, the 2021 Probate and Trust Law Section Conference will feature…

  • Essential Case Law and Legislative Updates
  • 50+ New and Updated Sessions
  • Multiple Perspectives on the Impact of Pandemic
  • Valuable Tips for Practicing Law Online
  • Opportunities to Earn Special Credits

8 Prominent National Experts Join a Talented Local Faculty!

  • Jonathan G. Blattmachr – InterActive Legal
    Planning for Anticipated Estate and Gift Tax Changes
  • Jeff Glickman – J4 Capital LLC
    New Frontiers in Estate Planning
  • Michelle Graham – Withers Bergman LLP
    Community Property: Impact on Marital Rights and Estate Planning
  • Richard W. Nenno – Wilmington Trust
    State Taxation of Trusts
  • Mark A. Sellner – Sellner Tax Consulting LLC
    Holding S Corporation Stock in Trust
  • Robert H. Sitkoff – Harvard Law School
    Making Directed Trusts Work
  • Lauren J. Wolven – Levenfeld Pearlstein LLC
    Modern Ethics Issues in Estate Planning
  • Naomita Yadav – Ernst & Young
    Community Property: Impact on Marital Rights and Estate Planning

Attendees Also Receive These Bonus Benefits!

  • $50 in Minnesota CLE Bonus Bucks
  • 3 Post-Conference Webcasts
  • Access to All Recorded Sessions for 1 Year Following the Conference (not for CLE credit)
  • And More!
Day 1 – Monday, June 7, 2021

7:30 a.m.

8:15 – 8:30 a.m.
– Jennifer A. Lammers & Tim Morrow

8:30 – 9:15 a.m.
2021 Non-Tax Case Law Update
An in-depth review of all Minnesota published and unpublished probate and trust cases and national published and unpublished probate and trust cases that provide relevant insight to our practice of law in Minnesota.
– Robert A. McLeod

9:15 – 9:20 a.m.

9:20 – 10:05 a.m.
Planning for Anticipated Estate and Gift Tax Changes
As much estate planning as was required in 2020, the prospects of massive changes to the tax law means that even more should be undertaken this year. This program will discuss some of the more important changes that will soon be considered in Washington, from increases in income tax rates, taxing long term capital gains as ordinary income, greatly increasing the social security taxes individuals pay, limiting the benefit of deductions to 28% and a reintroducing of the Pease deduction limitation. In addition to potentially reducing the estate, gift and GST tax exemptions and increasing the rates for those tax regimes, many other limitations to curb effective wealth transfer tax planning may be adopted, including effectively killing GRATs, limiting annual exclusions to $20,000 per donor (and not per donee) and making grantor trusts be included in the gross estate of the grantor. Perhaps, most significant may be the elimination of the tax-free step up in basis at death, with a carryover basis or gain recognition at death regime and/or an annual tax on gain under a mark-to-market system for market securities and other assets. The time to take action is now. This presentation will discuss proposed changes, what they may mean to estate planning clients and what action should be taken to cope with certain developments.
– Jonathan G. Blattmachr 

10:05 – 10:15 a.m.

10:15 – 11:15 a.m.

Your First Client: Using the Initial Client Interview to Inform the Estate Plan

– Letty M-S Van Ert

SECURE Act Primer

Updated analysis of the impact of the SECURE Act on post-death distributions from qualified retirement accounts.
– Bryan Jamison

Tax Aspects of Medical Care Costs in Late Life and in Settling Decedents’ Affairs

Medical care costs may produce meaningful income tax benefits for elders, even though younger, healthy people rarely find that to be the case. Later in life, when income (and thus an income-based limit on the use of medical care deductions) generally decreases, just as uninsured medical care costs normally increase, those costs more often are worth tracking. Additionally, for medical care costs that remain unpaid at death, a special option to claim them as either income tax or estate tax deductions applies. Thus, every attorney whose practice includes elder law, probate, or both, should have a good grasp of the enduring tax principles associated with medical care. This presentation highlights those principles in a way that’s intended to be palatable for the tax-averse, while also providing starting points for further research when the matter at hand requires it.
– Robert E. Lynn

New Frontiers in Estate Planning

Extraordinary changes have been made over the past few decades in estate planning practices, from word processing with voice recognition drafted documents to electronic research. This has resulted in a drastic structural changes in estate planning firms from a reduction in secretaries to virtual law libraries. But much more will come over the next decade especially from artificial intelligence to do research and to design estate plans to the use of artificial superintelligence to enhance wealth. This presentation will cover these and related topics. You need to be aware of these to keep your practice vibrant.
– Jonathan G. Blattmachr & Jeff Glickman

New Developments in Pooled Trusts: The Pfoser Decision and More

This session will answer the timely question as to whether individuals 65 and older may place funds in a pooled trust sub-account and retain their eligibility for Medicaid without suffering a penalty.
– Laurie A. Hanson

11:15 – 11:30 a.m.

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Your First Will and Trust: Key Considerations When Drafting Your First Will and Trust

– Omni N. Kiecker

The 2021 Small Estates Panel: A Discussion of Diverse Issues Encountered in the Administration of the Small Estate

This year the panelists will address: (1) Disposition of the Decedent: the law applicable to burial, cremation and other disposition of the decedent's remains; (2) Obsolete Family Trusts: options for dealing with the assets of a family trust when the original purpose of the trust no longer exists; (3) Exempt Assets in an Insolvent Estate: proper administration of statutorily exempt assets in an insolvent estate; and (4) Administering Unique Assets: ideas for properly administering special property like guns, artwork, collectibles, and other intangible personal property.
– Theresa M. Kowalski, Michael G. Kula & Mary Frances M. Price
– James T. McNary (moderator)

Life and Death: Estate Planning Strategies for Health Savings Accounts

Health Savings Accounts are becoming extremely popular vehicles to accumulate savings to pay for medical expenses tax free during retirement. For estate planning attorneys, this means more attention needs to be paid to these accounts in the planning process during lifetime to avoid unpleasant surprises after death. This session will cover how to incorporate Health Savings Accounts into your estate planning processes during your client’s lifetimes, while ensuring they are distributed in the most tax efficient manner possible after death.
– Ryan McKeown 

State Taxation of Trusts: Minnesota, the Dakotas, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan and Beyond

Planning for state income taxation of trusts is a critical aspect of the estate-planning process. If done well, it can produce substantial benefits; if done poorly, it can produce substantial cost. Mr. Nenno will:

  • Survey how all 50 states and the District of Columbia tax trust income
  • Summarize the constitutional limitations on such taxation following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Kaestner decision
  • Describe the rules in Minnesota and other key states
  • Consider planning for new and existing trusts
  • Address several related issues

– Richard W. Nenno 

2021 Judicial Perspectives on Probate and Estate Litigation

Judicial officers share their insights and advice for attorneys on probate and estate litigation in 2021.
– Judge Stephen J. Ferrazzano II, Referee Joel C. Olson & Referee Lori D. Skibbie
– Sonny F. Miller, Alan I. Silver & Pamela D. Steinle (co-moderators)

Trust Administration Takes a Village? The New Uniform Directed Trust Act Paves the Way for Creative and Thoughtful Divided Trusteeship
The duties and liabilities of directed trustees and trust directors remain a source of confusion. This session will canvass the new Uniform Directed Trust Act, explore how the Act simplifies drafting and administering directed trusts, and highlight some of the most common and helpful uses of directed trusts in the current planning environment.
– Robert H. Sitkoff 

Help! My E-filing Was Rejected

Learn how to e-file and avoid rejection (in the Probate Court).
– Cynthia R. Costello & Julie Peterson

12:30 – 1:00 p.m.

1:00 – 2:00 p.m.

Your First Health Care Directive and Power of Attorney

– Melissa Hagstrum Bayne

Time to Get in the Weeds: A Walk through the Boilerplate Provisions

Contributors to the popular Drafting Wills and Trust Agreements Deskbook explain the rationale behind the general will provisions.
– Andrea S. Breckner & Jennifer S. Santini

Medical Assistance Update 2021

– Amber M. Hildebrandt & Julian J. Zweber

Philanthropic Matchmaking: Applying the Best Strategies for Your Charitable Client

This session will review various charitable giving strategies and discuss how they are appropriate to clients’ different situations, depending on clients’ philanthropic views, assets and tax objectives. It will cover the structure and tax implications of charitable remainder trusts (CRTs), charitable lead trusts (CLTs), charitable gift annuities (CGAs), remainders in real estate, bequests and beneficiary designations, and private foundations versus donor advised funds. We will discuss how to apply these different strategies to best fit a range of donor estate, tax and financial planning objectives, to guide advisors in working with their philanthropic clients.
– Sheryl G. Morrison

A Toolbox for Probate and Trust Trials and Appeals in 2021

Practical pointers to help you better understand the strategic choices that can make you more effective at trial and on appeal:

  • Court trial vs. jury trial
  • How much time do you need to allocate? 
  • How to handle witnesses and exhibits? 
  • How do you deal with COVID? 
  • Depending on the outcome, to appeal or not to appeal? 
  • What are appealable issues? 
  • What are limitations on the time to appeal? 
  • How to seek and obtain attorneys’ fees in probate, trust, and guardianship/conservatorship cases 
  • Recent appellate decisions and trends

– Joseph J. Cassioppi & Peter C. Hennigan

The Power of Change: Comparing the Various Approaches to Trust Modification

Under current trust law, there are a number of different ways to modify an irrevocable trust, such as judicial modifications, non-judicial modifications and settlement agreements and decanting. With the ability to modify irrevocable trusts, estate planners can now reform and update trusts to take advantage of changes in the law or to better suit a family’s needs and circumstances. But, what is the best approach to use to modify a trust? This session will examine the various approaches to trust modification and the advantages and disadvantages of each approach.
– Chad A. Carr

2021 Probate Panel

The panelists share their insights on important probate matters in 2021.
– William R. Asp, Andrea S. Breckner, Cynthia R. Costello, Daniel R. Donovan, J. Steve Nys & Julie Peterson
– Susan J. Link (moderator)

How to Avoid Malpractice Claims in Estate Planning

1.0 ethics credit applied for
– Todd C. Scott

2:00 – 2:15 p.m.

2:15 – 3:15 p.m.

Your First Probate: How to Manage Important Timelines and Deadlines

– Paul D. Funke

2021 Guardianship and Conservatorship Update

– Robert A. McLeod

How to Negotiate Your Way Out of Timeshares

Expert advice for how to extract your clients from their timeshare contracts.
– William G. Cottrell

How to Speak to Your Clients About Their Charitable Giving

If charitable giving is important to your clients, then it is definitely part of your client conversations, right? How do you discover if it is an important piece of your clients’ overarching set of goals? What does a client discussion about charitable giving look like (especially if you are not trained in this area of the law)? Hear the expert and a client perspective on this and why it’s important to them.
– Bradley J. Frank, Gil Mann & Mandy K. Tuong
– Alene G. Sussman (moderator)

What Probate and Trust Litigators Want Planners to Know

This session will feature a panel of probate and trust litigators sharing insights on their experiences dealing with common (and not so common) litigation issues that can come up because of estate planning: capacity, Will ambiguities, heirship, and family dynamics. Panelists will provide practical pointers so that planners can better avoid litigation issues when their documents are probated.
– Kimberly A. Prchal, Jill M. Sauber & Patricia J. Stotzheim
– Jayne E. Sykora (moderator)

Introduction to Supplemental and Special Needs Trusts

– Kristin M. Franzoni & Lori L. Guzmán

How to Calculate the Elective Share in the Augmented Estate

– Michael P. Sampson

The Ethics of Working with Family-Owned Businesses – Who Is My Client?

1.0 ethics credit applied for
When one generation seeks to transfer their business to the next, they bring their legacy, their vision, and…their potential conflicts. Learn how to plan ahead to avoid conflicts by defining the scope of the representation, carefully identifying the client, and dealing with unrepresented parties.
– Eric T. Cooperstein & Jacqueline A. Dorsey

3:15 – 3:30 p.m.

3:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Your First Irrevocable Trust

– Jayne E. Sykora

Navigating the Minefield: Planning and Administration Ideas for Working With the "Difficult Beneficiary"

This session will discuss the challenges presented by difficult beneficiaries. The presenters will discuss drafting and administering trusts for the benefit of beneficiaries who have mental health challenges or learning disabilities, who engage in self-destructive behavior, who are spendthrifts, or who are just plain indolent.
– Peter M. Hendricks & James T. McNary

Probate and Trustee Conveyances – Understanding the White Pages, What to Record and Why, Plus Practical Tips That Can Make Things Easier

– Matthew J. Foli & Jennifer L. Gilk

2021 Large Estates Panel

– Cameron R. Seybolt, Marya P. Robben & Sarah J. Wentz
– Michael P. Sampson (moderator)

How to Navigate the Emotional and Psychological Aspects of Estate Planning and Litigation

– Jody A. Cohen Press & James M. Crist
– Rodney J. Mason (moderator)

Selecting Trustees: A Panel Discussion

The goal of the session is to prepare you to guide your client through the trustee selection process. The panel of practitioners and corporate trustees will discuss what lawyers should be thinking about when advising a client selecting a trustee. The discussions will cover topics including: Pros and Cons of individual trustees, corporate trustees and co-trustees, tax implications of trustees (location matters) and the potential effect on family relations.
– Paul J. Dinzeo, Lauren L. Fink, Serena O’Neil, Maria D. Plese & Christine J. Schmidt
– Daniel R. Donovan (moderator)

Answers to the Top 10 Questions Received by Probate Registrars

Minnesota probate registrars will answer the questions they receive most often on what to do and when/how to do it in Minnesota informal probate proceedings.
– Darla Busian, Vicki O’Brien & Laura J. Stevens
– Jaclynn M. Sparby (moderator)

The World Has Changed – Are You Prepared to Successfully Resolve Modern Ethics Issues in Estate Planning?

1.0 ethics credit applied for
COVID-19 has only sped up the pace of change in technology and communication. We do not yet know what our new normal will look like, and we are facing evolving issues in the ethics realm such as representing individuals that we may never have been present with in the same room. Being thoughtful about the questions we are asking and how we are drafting our documents will make us better advisors and may help us avoid unseen pitfalls in the ethics realm. This presentation will address ethics implications for attorneys related to: (a) the impact of gender fluidity on estate planning, (b) difficulties arising from legalization of marijuana, (c) the effect of changed societal norms on planning for families, (d) special considerations for LGBTQ clients and (e) new hurdles resulting from COVID-19.
– Lauren J. Wolven

Day 2 – Tuesday, June 8, 2021

7:15 a.m.

8:00 – 9:00 a.m.

Your First Estate Tax Return

– Brooke Hanssen, Andrew T. Howard & Katherine S. Weber

SECURE Act Case Studies

Updated discussion of many fact scenarios that may arise in your practice and planning options regarding structuring post-death distributions from qualified retirement accounts.
– Bryan Jamison

Spotting International Issues That Impact Your Clients’ Estate Plans

The speakers will present highlights from real world scenarios that involve common international income and transfer tax concerns. Topics covered by this presentation include: planning for U.S. citizens considering an international move; planning for noncitizens living in the U.S.; planning for non-resident aliens with U.S. connections; ownership of foreign property (residential property, investments and foreign bank accounts); and foreign trusts with U.S. beneficiaries. This presentation will help planners better identify potential international estate planning issues, whether it is a client who has announced a desire to relocate internationally, a client who wants to name a non-U.S. person as a fiduciary or a client whose spouse turns out not to be a U.S. citizen despite having lived in the U.S. for years.
– Jennifer A. Ede & Karen N. Sandler Steinert

Navigating Virtual Litigation in Probate Disputes

As a result of COVID, litigation has become largely virtual, including trust, estate, and guardianship/conservator matters, and remote litigation is expected to remain after we get through the pandemic. This session will update you on how courts are handing initial hearings, motions, and trials. The experienced panel will offer practical tips for taking depositions remotely, representing clients in Zoom hearings, and effectively managing remote mediations, trial, and more.
– Norman M. Abramson, Adine S. Momoh & Julian C. Zebot
– Kim M. Ruckdaschel-Haley (moderator)

Holding S Corp Stock in Trust

This session covers the types of trusts that are eligible S corporation shareholders, as well as the taxation of those trusts. Since transfers to an ineligible shareholder disqualifies the S corporation election for all shareholders, it is critical to know and follow the applicable shareholder rules. Topics include:

  • Grantor Trusts
  • Qualified Subpart E Trusts
  • Qualified Subchapter S Trusts
  • Testamentary Trusts
  • Voting Trusts
  • Electing Small Business Trusts
  • Dealing with Ineligible Shareholders

– Mark A. Sellner

How to Handle Your First Agricultural Estate Plan

– Jessica McCaslin & Toni M. Sandin

Elimination of Bias: Litigation Involving Vulnerable Adults – Ageism, Opportunism, and Autonomy

1.0 elimination of bias credit applied for
Join our panel as they connect these themes with your work in advising older adults and families in a way that offers useful perspective, tools, and/or moral support. The panel will address the following:

  • Identifying biases involving vulnerable adults
  • Protection vs. control
  • Less restrictive alternatives to guardianship/conservatorship
  • Undue influence/lack of capacity in estate planning

– Susan B. Crumb & Marit Anne Peterson
– Sharma Foley Affeldt (moderator)

9:00 – 9:15 a.m.

9:15 – 10:15 a.m.

New Lawyer Panel: Advice, Dos and Don’ts, Q and A and Resources

– Amy Greske, Taylor Kaspar, Emily Valentine-Grimm & Letty M-S Van Ert
– Kimberly A. Prchal (moderator)

Community Property: Impact on Marital Rights and Estate Planning

An overview of estate and income tax implications of community property. Topics will include marital rights in community property states, treatment upon inter-state movement, basis aspects and changing default treatment via marital agreements. This session will cover traps for the unwary when moving to or from community property states and pros and cons of owning community property.
– Michelle Graham & Naomita Yadav

What Estate Planners Should Know About Drafting Buy-Sell Agreements

– Hari S. Panjini

How to Keep Your Documents and Network Secure When Working Remotely

– John J. Carney

2021 Trust Officer Panel

– Kiley E.P. Henry, Barry A. Kelner, Jason W. Schuller & Sarah N. Sonday
– Sharma Foley Affeldt (moderator)

Disclaimer and QTIP Wills and Trusts: Like a “Swiss Army Knife” Loaded with Seldom Needed Tools

More than ever, farmer's estate documents should be like a "Swiss Army Knife" – loaded with seldom needed tools. Instability in farmland prices and the reversion of the estate tax exemption amount in 2026 require a new preparedness. This presentation will explain ideas for a practical and workable architecture for estate plans, which give the survivors the opportunity for postmortem planning for the best tax results and provide easily understandable outcomes.
– Patrick K. Costello

Elimination of Bias: Client Counseling and Addiction/Mental Health

1.0 elimination of bias credit applied for
This seminar will address considerations attorneys should take into account when working with clients impacted by substance use disorder or mental health – whether it be the client personally, or a family member. Ms. Schromen will provide an overview of substance use disorder and mental health, including how to identify these issues and how to successfully start and have conversations with the client. This seminar will also address biases, myths and misunderstandings that many people have about addiction and mental illness, suggested language to use, and potential dynamics to be aware of which may arise.
– Rachel T. Schromen

10:15 – 10:30 a.m.

10:30 – 11:00 a.m.
2021 Legislative Update
A fast-paced review of estate planning related developments in the 2021 legislative session.
– Adam J. Rohne & Cameron R. Seybolt

11:00 – 11:15 a.m.
MSBA Probate and Trust Law Section Meeting
– Jennifer A. Lammers

11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Exploring the Potential New World of Electronic Wills, Harmless Error and Remote Notarization
A look at new draft legislation and how the increasing digitalization of estate planning impacts litigation.
– J. Steve Nys & Denise S. Rahne

12:00 – 12:30 p.m.

12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
The Impact of the Pandemic on Estate Planning Practice
A panel of experienced estate planners representing firms of different sizes reflect on the impact of the pandemic on their practices, including how they’ve adapted to working with clients and courts remotely. They will also share the new procedures and practices they plan to keep when things return to “mostly normal.”
– Joshua C. Hillger, Nora P. Huxtable, B. Steven Messick & Tessa R. Mielke
– Jennifer S. Santini (moderator)

1:30 – 1:45 p.m.

1:45 – 2:45 p.m.
Elimination of Bias: Mapping and Acknowledging the Hidden Histories of Race and Privilege in the Twin Cities
1.0 elimination of bias credit applied for
Attorneys Maria Cisneros and Jared Shepherd will describe how historical practices in real estate transfers (the use of racially restrictive property deeds and covenants and redlining by federal housing administrators, loan officers and banks) in the first half of the 20th century led to racial prejudice and racial disparities that negatively impacted minorities in the Twin Cities and still resonate today. The attorneys will discuss the work of the Mapping Prejudice project from the University of Minnesota in mapping these covenants. The attorneys will also introduce the Just Deeds Project, which provides free legal and title services to discharge discriminatory covenants. The Project is designed to acknowledge discriminatory housing practices and foster anti-racist action in Minnesota communities. 
– Maria T. Cisneros & Jared D. Shepherd

Free Post-Conference Webcasts

View 3 FREE Webcasts  |  Earn 3 Extra Credits
The learning continues even when the conference is over! Following the conference, all attendees may view 3 webcasts for free and receive 3 additional CLE credits. Instructions for how to register will be provided during the conference.

Thursday, June 17   |   9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Using TODDs to Transfer Real Estate: Current Issues and Avoiding Missteps
1.0 standard CLE credit applied for
– Jennifer L. Carey

Thursday, June 17   |   12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Representing a Fiduciary or Heirs with Tax Controversies
1.0 standard CLE credit applied for
– Claudia M. Revermann

Friday, June 18   |   12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
How to Talk to Children (of Any Age) About Wealth, Inheritance and Family Legacy
1.0 standard CLE credit applied for
– Caitlin E. Abram

Monday & Tuesday, June 7 & 8, 2021
Attend online


There are no replays.

$545 MSBA members / $545 paralegals / $645 standard rate

Other discounts that may apply:

Scholarships available!
Need-based scholarships are available for in-person and online seminars. For further information or to obtain a scholarship application, contact us at 800-759-8840 or customerservice@minncle.org.

Minnesota CLE is applying to the Minnesota State Board of CLE for 12.0 total CLE credits, including 1.0 elimination of bias credit for the closing plenary on Day 2. Minnesota CLE also has applied for the following:

  • 1.0 ethics credit each for sessions 308, 408 and 508
  • 1.0 elimination of bias credit each for sessions 607 and 707

The maximum number of total CLE credits an attendee may claim for the Institute is 12.0 credits, not including the post-conference webcasts.

Minnesota CLE is applying to the Minnesota State Board of CLE for 1.0 standard CLE credit for each post-conference webcast.


You may use your Pass to register for the live webcast at no charge.