On Demand

How to Advocate for LGBTQ Families Using Tax and Estate Planning

1h 2m

Created on June 25, 2020





Since the Supreme Court decision establishing marriage equality in Obergefell, many of us believe that LGBTQ families no longer have unusual planning issues. Yet even as Obergefell was made law and the IRS provided tax benefits for lawfully married LGBTQ couples, some states and municipalities have remained hostile toward LGBTQ families, making it difficult for them to really enjoy the benefits that legally accompany marriage equality. And as the current Federal administration has seemingly emboldened opponents of LGBTQ families or, at the very least, refrained from protecting the rights of LGBTQ families, it is important for estate planning attorneys to understand how the benefits derived from the Internal Revenue Code then stream into other government agencies. 

In addition, many LGBTQ partners remain unmarried, and if they are elderly or have children, they are in a heightened state of legal vulnerability. Current legislation such as the SECURE Act speaks to the need for such special care and provisions.

This program, presented by Max Elliott, founder of a Chicago-based firm practicing estate planning and wealth preservation for the LGBTQ community, women, and small business owners, will provide attorneys with the skills to use tax and estate planning to advocate for their LGBTQ clients. In addition to managing the Law Firm of Max Elliott, Ms. Elliott is a member of the Chicago Bar Association Trust Law Executive Committee, Chicago Estate Planning Council, and American Bar Foundation Fellow. She frequently presents on estate planning topics such as marriage equality and the intersection of retirement and estate planning. 

Learning Objectives:

  1. Review marriage equality jurisprudence, relevant Internal Revenue Code rulings, and the current national, regional, and municipal landscape affecting legal protections that accompany marriage equality
  2. Become familiar with issues affecting LGBTQ families as a whole, including marital estate deduction and spousal lifetime planning, planning in light of the SECURE ACT, and relief or lack thereof during disasters such as the COVID-19 pandemic
  3. Distinguish between estate, asset protection, and retirement planning and how the various types of planning can support or undermine families goals depending on the interplay
  4. Identify estate planning instruments, provisions, and operations of law that can support protections needed by LGBTQ families regardless of their marital status or composition 

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