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Leveraging Life Insurance in Estate Planning: ILITs, Minimizing Estate Taxes, Premium Payments, Pitfalls to Avoid

Note: CPE credit is not offered on this program

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

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE webinar will provide estate planners guidance for utilizing life insurance as a tax and estate planning tool. The panel will discuss the key considerations in determining the use of life insurance for tax and estate planning, structuring irrevocable life insurance trusts (ILITs), minimizing estate taxes, navigating transfers and valuation issues, and other key items regarding estate planning and life insurance.


The use of life insurance is an essential tool for estate planning for high net worth individuals and families. A carefully structured and administered ILIT will also protect life insurance assets from taxation. Drafting effective ILITs is critical to achieving the desired tax benefits and allowing flexibility to address challenges related to trustees, modification, and termination.

Errors in drafting ILITs are not always apparent at the time documents are created. Even if the ILIT is mistake-free, changes in circumstances may call for the ILIT to be modified. Because ILITs are irrevocable, it is essential to allow for modification.

The application of the transfer for value rule and its exceptions can be complicated. Transfers of life insurance policies and interests in those policies must be scrutinized for possible violations of the transfer of value rule. Reviewing beneficiary designations is vital to avoid future issues.

Listen as our panel of estate planning attorneys provides guidance on the challenges in drafting ILITs, discusses pitfalls to avoid in the application of the transfer of value rules and its exceptions, and points out the importance of reviewing beneficiary designations.



  1. Utiling life insurance in estate planning and pitfalls to avoid
  2. Strategies for drafting ILITs
  3. Tax issues
  4. Trustee duties and liabilities
  5. Crummey withdrawal power
  6. Transfer for value rule and exceptions
  7. Beneficiary designations


The panel will review these and other priority questions:

  • What are the key considerations when utilizing life insurance in estate planning?
  • What are the critical provisions in ILITs?
  • What are the pitfalls when using an ILIT? What steps can be taken to overcome those pitfalls?
  • What are the pitfalls to avoid in the application of the transfer of value rules and its exceptions?


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

Nowotny, Gerald
Gerald R. (Gerry) Nowotny, JD, LLM

Managing Partner
Law Office of Gerald R. Nowotny

Mr. Nowotny has over 30 years in the insurance and financial planning industries. He has developed an expertise in tax...  |  Read More

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