Wills Trusts Estates (LAW-697-002)
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Goals: To prepare students to deal with the complex property concepts involved in the area of Wills, Trusts and Estates by exposing them to intensive doctrinal analysis and simultaneously introducing sample documents and real-world hypotheticals that require them to engage in critical thinking, logical reasoning, and the creative application of theory to real situations.
In my classes, we use sample documents, and we build off them and the theoretical concepts in frequent in-class efforts to re-write the defective documents that produced much of the litigation we read about in our textbooks.Outcomes: Students who complete this course should understand the law of wills, trusts and estates, the process and purpose of probate, the fundamental objectives of client interviews to obtain the information needed to draft estate planning documents, and basic techniques needed to draft non-complex wills, inter vivos revocable trusts, and powers of attorney for financial and for health care purposes. In addition, students should have mastered the basic principles of how property is distributed from a decedent to his or her heirs or beneficiaries, together with an understanding of the probate process, and the role and operation of trusts in our society.
Assessments: The final examination is the central assessment tool, combined with the quality of in-class discussion and participation.
Textbooks and Other Materials
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First Class Readings
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