Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts: Tax-Efficient Estate Planning Techniques

Leveraging GRATs to Preserve and Transfer Assets

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

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Conducted on Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Recorded event now available

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Course Materials

This CLE course will prepare estate planning attorneys to identify estate planning opportunities in grantor retained annuity trusts (GRATs). The panel will outline how to structure GRATs and teach skills for evaluating various tax impacts of GRATs as tax and investment planning vehicles.


A GRAT is an effective vehicle to transfer assets and property that will likely appreciate in value to heirs. When set up correctly, these trusts afford their grantors reduced tax liability for gifts to children, while the underlying assets continue to grow in value.

When the trust term ends, the remainder interest passes to the grantor’s children. So long as the grantor survives the GRAT term, the amount that passes to the children is not subject to estate tax.

Although the grantor survivorship requirement suggests GRAT terms of short duration—often just two years, recent trends favor longer-term GRATs that allow the trust to lock in current low interest rates or values. Current low interest rates make GRATs particularly advantageous at this time.

Listen as our panel of experienced estate planning attorneys discusses best practices for maximizing the benefits of GRATs.



  1. Structuring GRATs
    1. Regulatory and statutory requirements
    2. Impact of low interest rates
    3. Threat of statutory changes
  2. Tax consequences for GRATs
    1. Gift tax implications
    2. Estate tax implications
    3. Generation-skipping transfer tax implications
    4. Income tax implications


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What are the statutory and regulatory requirements for structuring GRATs?
  • How do the current interest rates impact the viability of GRATs?
  • What are effective planning approaches for using GRATs?


Kramer, Eric
Eric M. Kramer

Farrell Fritz

Mr. Kramer focuses on estate and business succession planning for high-net-worth individuals and families. He...  |  Read More

Carolan, James
James A. Carolan, JD, CWS®

Vice President Wealth Manager
Monroe Bank & Trust

Mr. Carolan has more than 20 years of experience in estate planning, including planning for non-U.S. citizens or...  |  Read More

Tippett , Scott
Scott K. Tippett

The Tippett Law Firm

Mr. Tippett's practice focuses on wealth law, as a comprehensive and integrated approach to domestic and...  |  Read More

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