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Estate Planning Techniques for Rising and Falling Interest Rates: Key Strategies and Pitfalls to Avoid

Intrafamily Loans, Installment Sales, GRATs, Charitable Remainder Trust, Qualified Personal Residence Trust, Charitable Lead Trust

Recording of a 90-minute CLE/CPE video webinar with Q&A

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This program is included with the Strafford CPE+ Pass. Click for more information.
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Conducted on Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE/CPE webinar will provide estate planners guidance on effective estate and tax planning strategies for both a high interest rate and low interest rate environment. The panel will discuss the impact of interest rates on estate planning and provide insight as to which planning techniques work better when interest rates are at different levels.


Estate planning techniques are significantly impacted by prevailing interest rates, with certain strategies being more advantageous than others in a rising or falling interest rate environment. Estate planners must recognize the impact of rising and falling interest rates and structure or modify plans accordingly to ensure the needs of clients are met and minimize adverse tax implications.

In a falling interest rate environment, planning involves utilizing lending strategies, such as intrafamily-loans, an installment sale to an intentionally defective grantor trust, grantor retained annuity trust (GRAT), or charitable lead trust (CLT), to leverage the low interest rates in order to transfer wealth while minimizing taxes. If structured correctly, these strategies will allow you to (1) freeze the value of the assets that they lend, and (2) pass the asset's appreciation to family members or trusts.

In a rising interest rate environment, the goal would be to utilize strategies, such as a qualified personal residence trust (QPRT) and charitable remainder trust (CRT), to capitalize on higher interest rates to reduce the actuarial value of a taxable gift.

Estate planners must have a complete understanding of the nuances and challenges of available planning options and determine what approach will ensure the best results.

Listen as our panel discusses the impact of interest rates on estate planning and offers insight on planning techniques that work better when interest rates are at different levels.



  1. Overview: impact of interest rates on estate planning
  2. Planning in a rising interest rate environment
  3. Planning in a falling interest rate environment
  4. Utilizing trusts and challenges
  5. Minimizing income, gift, and estate taxes
  6. Best practices for estate planners


The panel will discuss these and other key issues:

  • What are the key planning considerations in a rising interest rate environment?
  • What are the critical planning considerations in a falling interest rate environment?
  • What gifting strategies are available to limit or minimize gift and estate taxes?
  • What are the challenges of using GRATs, CLTs, CRTs, and QPRTs?
  • Other planning issues that arise in structuring or modifying estate plans in light of rising and falling interest rates


Buckley, Seth
Seth J. Buckley, CFP, CLU, ChFC, MSFS, AEP, TEP

Buckley Financial

Mr. Buckley is President of Buckley Financial, an independent concierge life insurance planning firm specializing in...  |  Read More

Frederick, David
David Frederick, J.D., LL.M.

Senior Manager, Tax Services

Mr. Frederick is a Senior Manager of Taxation in the Private Client Group of LBMC, PC. He is an attorney by background...  |  Read More

Lazo, Christiana
Christiana M. Lazo


Ms. Lazo’s practice consists of representing ultra-high net worth individuals, their family offices, and closely...  |  Read More

Lipoff, Lawrence
Lawrence M. Lipoff, CPA, TEP


With more than 30 years of experience, Mr. Lipoff specializes in the delivery of domestic and international private...  |  Read More

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