Estates and Estate Planning
827: Succession Planning Capstone
CAPSTONE COURSE – SUCCESSION PLANNING FOR THE FAMILY BUSINESS
PROFS. RHODES AND KWALL
This Capstone Course is limited to twelve, 3Ls who have completed Estate & Gift Tax and Advanced Corporate Tax. For the first half of the semester, the capstone students will be part of the Estate Planning class taught by Prof. Rhodes during which time they will learn the fundamentals of estate planning. After spring break, the Capstone students will have their own specialized classes co-taught by Professors Kwall and Rhodes that focus on family business planning.
The Capstone Course is intended to serve as a “bridge to practice” for future lawyers representing entrepreneurs of successful multi-generation, family-owned businesses. These clients expect to be serviced by a lead professional who can integrate business, income tax, and estate planning objectives. Although the Tax Certificate program offers a rich curriculum in income tax and estate tax, these courses only provide the building blocks to comprehensive planning. This Capstone Course is designed to equip students with the integrative understanding necessary to meet the demands of the mature entrepreneur who will expect his/her business planning, retirement planning, and death planning to be led by a lawyer with foresight, judgment and a big picture perspective.
The Capstone Course students will focus on a case study that raises a myriad of income tax and estate planning issues. Students will diagnose and analyze existing tax problems and develop a variety of options including a transfer of the business to a younger generation, a sale of the business to unrelated parties, or a reorganization of the business. The students will work in teams and each team will be expected to produce a detailed planning outline explaining the problems, alternative solutions and the issues they present that can be used to educate the client and develop a course of action. There will not be a final exam. As to grading, 50% will be based on the first half of the semester and 50% will be based on the second half of the semester.