51st Annual Program Short Course on Estate Planning

- in Plano, Texas, USA

The Center for American and International Law
5201 Democracy Drive
Plano, Texas 75024

Online registration is closed. Please bring your completed registration form to the door. 

Past Event

Credits:MCLE Credit will be available


Co-chaired by Santo Bisignano, Jr. (Bisignano Harrison Neuhoff LLP) and Michael V. Bourland (Bourland, Wall & Wenzel, P.C.), this annual program is designed for the new lawyer, CPA, financial planner and trust officer whose primary career focus requires a thorough knowledge of estate planning.  It is also a great program for the experienced lawyer who wants to be re-introduced to the estate planning profession. 

The 2015 course features Professor Stanley M. Johanson (The University of Texas School of Law), Darin N. Digby (Schoenbaum, Curphy & Scanlan, P.C.), Stephen R. Akers (Bessemer Trust Company) and Alvin J. Golden (Ikard Golden Jones, P.C.).

(Click on the name in blue to read a note from the faculty member.)

Download the Brochure (pdf)

For more details, download the online brochure.


  • A Visit to Stanley’s Estate Planning Toolbox
  • Marital Deduction and Life Insurance Planning
  • Hot Topics in Estate Planning
  • Business Succession
  • Estate Planning Ethics
  • Primer on Charitable Planning
  • And More!


Santo Bisignano, Jr.
Bisignano Harrison Neuhoff LLP

Michael V. Bourland
Bourland, Wall & Wenzel, P.C.


Stanley Johanson
The University of Texas School of Law

Darin N. Digby
Schoenbaum, Curphy & Scanlan, P.C.

Stephen R. Akers
Bessemer Trust Company

Alvin J. Golden
Ikard Golden Jones, P.C.


Multiple Registrants from the same organization: Please contact Vickie for special pricing for tuition levels exceeding $675 - vadams@cailaw.org or 972.244.3408.

  • $1175 / $1225 - Regular Tuition
  • $1025 / $1075 - CAIL Member or Member Employee
  • $1075 / $1125 - Government / Non-profit / Academic Employee
  • $587.50 / $637.50 - Attorneys, CFPs, CPAs and Trust Officers Licensed/Employed 3 Years or Less
  • $275 / $325 - U.S. Law Student (J.D.)
  • $625 / $675 - I cannot attend, but want to order the materials


Wednesday, February 4

8:30 am

Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:00 am

Basic Principles and Strategies in Estate Planning

Impact on your clients (and you) of what Congress has done with respect to the estate and gift tax. Overview of basic planning techniques, valuation issues, gross estate inclusion rules, lifetime gifts, basic estate planning for spouses, community property considerations. Trusts as important planning tools in non-taxable estates.

  • Professor Stanley M. Johanson, James A. Elkins Centennial Chair in Law, University Distinguished Teaching Professor, The University of Texas School of Law, Austin, Texas

10:15 am


10:30 am

A Visit to Stanley's Estate Planning Toolbox (Time includes a 15 minute break)

Review of basic planning techniques that should be used more often by clients (a) in good health or (b) in rapidly declining health – techniques that are (i) inexpensive to implement and (ii) easy for clients to understand: fractional interest gifts of vacation properties and ranches. Rev. Rul. 93-12 and why lifetime gifts are cheaper than testamentary gifts, valuation issues in funding marital and charitable gifts – of control premiums and minority discounts, gifts that move from “control” to minority – avoiding Estate of Murphy and buying into Estate of Frank, gifts of life insurance policies and the Silverman gambit, prepaying grandchildren’s tuitions, why you shouldn’t have deleted your Grantor Retained Income Trust and Split Interest Purchase forms from your computer.

  • Professor Johanson

12:15 pm

Lunch Provided

1:15 pm

Qualified Plan Benefits and IRA's in Estate Planning

What the estate planner needs to know about qualified plans and individual retirement accounts, analysis of minimum distribution rules, review of strategies for commonly encountered planning situations, spousal rollover issues; coordination of qualified plan benefits and IRAs with QTIP marital deduction trusts.

  • Professor Johanson

2:45 pm


3:00 pm

Life Insurance Planning and Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts

Review of income, gift, and estate taxation of life insurance, use of irrevocable life insurance trusts to provide estate liquidity and to solve other common (and not so common) problems, Crummey clauses and the advantages and disadvantages of each, problems with poorly administered “Crummey” trusts and solutions to those trusts.

  • Santo Bisignano, Jr., Bisignano Harrison Neuhoff LLP

5:00 pm

Recess and Hosted Networking Reception

Thursday, February 5

8:30 am

Estate Planning Ethics

Ethical issues and conflict of interest concerns in estate planning for multiple members of the same family, as well as for the family’s business interests; conflict of interest and confidentiality problems in planning for spouses, siblings, and other family members; client conflict letters and other documentation; malpractice concerns; quality control procedures; privity issues.

  • Michael V. Bourland, Bourland, Wall & Wenzel, P.C., Fort Worth, Texas
  • Darin N. Digby, Schoenbaum, Curphy & Scanlan, P.C., San Antonio, Texas

9:30 am


9:45 am

Marital Deduction Planning & Portability

Basic Strategies and current problem areas in estate planning for spouses, QTIP trusts and the QTIP election, drafting problems and their solutions. Analysis of types of marital deduction formula clauses (true worth, minimum worth, fairly representative) and advantages and disadvantages of each, discussion of fractional share clauses and comparison with pecuniary formulas. How portability has impacted marital deduction planning and its problems and benefits.

  • Alvin J. Golden, Ikard Golden Jones, P.C.

11:45 am

Lunch Provided

12:00 pm

Lunch Presentation: Primer on Charitable Planning

  • Mr. Bourland

1:00 pm


1:15 pm

Planning for the Family Business, including Family Limited Partnerships (FLPS); Working with a Client Closing a Business Entity

Estate and succession planning for a family business and its owners; ascertaining family attitudes toward wealth and the family business; development of planning objectives; determining whether a business should be sold or kept in the family; advantages of a charitable organization as a planning partner; tax and non-tax advantages of family limited partnerships; checklist of planning alternatives; case studies.

  • Mr. Bourland

2:15 pm


2:30 pm

Transfer Planning (Time includes a 15 minute break)

Lifetime estate planning transfers, especially transfers of property over which the donor wishes to maintain some control, including points to consider in designing donor-trusteed irrevocable trusts; practical planning ideas for removing appreciation from the estate by using GRATs and Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts.

  • Mr. Digby

5:00 pm


Friday, February 6

8:30 am

Hot Topics in Estate Planning (Time includes a 15 minute break)

The estate planning world is ever changing—with legislative, IRS guidance and case law changes requiring constant attention to keep abreast of the latest developments. The developments that have the most practical impact on estate planning practices are discussed, including the trends in the development of estate plans in light of the changed paradigms of planning due to major legislative changes over the last several years. 

  • Stephen R. Akers, Bessemer Trust Company, Dallas, Texas

11:30 am

Lunch Provided

12:00 pm

Gifting Techniques and an Overview of the Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax

What you need to know about the GST tax; how to make efficient use of GST exemption allocations; application and implementation of the various GST severance rules and late allocation rules; and an overview of some basic GST tax planning considerations and strategies.

  • Mr. Digby

2:00 pm


2:15 pm

Generation-Skipping, continued

3:00 pm

Post-Mortem Planning

Various tax planning issues in administering estates, covering disclaimers and selected income tax and estate tax issues.

  • Mr. Digby

4:00 pm


CLE Credits

MCLE Credit

This program is approved by the State Bar of Texas for 20.0 hours, including 1 hour of ethics. Course ID Number: 901305030. Credit hours for other states will vary and are subject to each state’s approval and credit rounding rules.

For this conference, CAIL will directly apply (if requested) for course accreditation in the following states: California, Minnesota, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia. Some of these states may not approve a program for credit hours before the program occurs. Attorneys may be eligible to receive CLE credit through reciprocity or attorney self-submission in other states. CAIL conferences are typically accredited by all mandatory CLE states.

Specialization Credit

This program is approved by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization for 20 hours in the following areas: Estate Planning and Probate Law and Tax Law

CPA Credit

CPA’s will receive 24 hours of CPE credit, no ethics. A sign-in sheet will be available at the conference. Certificates will be e-mailed.


“The speakers were very knowledgeable and engaging.”

“I felt free to ask questions of the speakers”

“I liked that the course gave a good overview, big picture look at each topic to bring us all up to the same page.”

“The materials are very thorough and will be good for reference.”

-- 2014 Participants 

Overnight Accommodations

The cost of housing is not included in tuition. However, rooms (in limited number) have been reserved at Hyatt Place Dallas/Plano, 3100 Dallas Parkway, Plano, Texas 75093, Tel: 972.378.3997. Registrants should mention group code G-CL47 to receive the reduced room rate of $92 ++. The last day to obtain this special rate is January 20, 2015.

Booking Instructions

Book online at dallasplano.place.hyatt.com - Type in Arrival/Departure Dates
Select the Offers and Gift Certificates Option
In the second field titled Corporate or Group Code, enter: G-CL47

Please make reservations by Tuesday, 1/20/15.

Reservations received after this date are not guaranteed availability and will be booked at the hotel’s best available rate.

Other Information

Nondiscriminatory Policy

The Center for American and International Law does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, veteran status or any other protected status in educational activities, scholarship programs or admissions.

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Registrar: +1.972.244.3404
Fax: +1.972.244.3401
E-Mail: ccle@cailaw.org

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