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Past Meeting Topics


Past speakers over the last 12 months have included:


Blockchain Technology, Legislation and the Estate Planning Industry by John Carpenter: Mr. Carpenter discussed the definition, structure and the use and relevancy of blockchain technology. This included an overview of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets that may be held in an estate. Additionally, Mr. Carpenter talked about estate planning and settlement issues related to blockchain based assets. Lastly, he discussed legislation in Colorado and other states that addresses this technology.


Colorado's End-of-Life Options Act: How the Law Works and Potential Issues presented by Paige Armstrong, attorney at Steenrod, Schwartz & McMinimee, LLP. Ms. Armstrong discussed Colorado's End-of-Life Options Act by providing a background and explanation of how the law functions. She provided an overview of the requirements for obtaining medical aid in dying medication, as well as discuss how Colorado's End-of-Life Options Act compares to other states that have passed similar laws allowing terminally ill patients to end their lives. In addition, the presentation addressed issues that Colorado faces as a result of the law's implementation in its legal and medical fields.


Colorado Uniform Trust Codepresented by Darla L. Daniel, Esq., Special Counsel with Balson & Faix, LLP. Ms. Daniel spoke about the history and journey to successfully pass a Uniform Trust Code in Colorado. She highlighted general provisions and definitions of the Act. In addition, she discussed the Code as it pertains to various types of trusts, the role of trustee, liability and rights of persons dealing with trustees.


Knowledge is Power – Financial and Estate Planning Strategies for Women presented byJackie Battista, CFP®, MBA, APMA®, Financial Advisor, Ethos Financial Partners, a financial advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial and Sati C. McLafferty, Esq., Ambler Keenan Mitchell Johnson. Ms. Battista and Ms. McLafferty discussed ways for women to gain control over their financial and estate planning situations, to protect the people and things we love the most, and to make informed and coordinated financial and estate planning decisions.


Real Estate Issues in Estate Planning and Administration presented by Anda Pilmanis, Esq. of Pilmanis Law, LLC and real estate broker with Metro Brokers – Laarsen Sells Denver. Ms. Pilmanis discussed considerations and issues with real estate in estate planning and administration including title of assets, different types of deeds, title insurance and errors in property description. Following the death of the individual, how does the administrator determine if real estate is part of the estate, is it a gift and if so, the type of gift, and when and how should real estate be valued? She also discussed unique issues that may be a part of the real estate such as water and oil and gas rights, easements and leases. Finally, Ms. Pilmanis shared the powers and duties of the executor, administrator or trustee when administering real estate.


Trust Protectors presented by Elizabeth T. Meck, Vice President, Personal Trust and Estate Administration at Northern Trust and Susan J. Merritt, Senior Vice President, Wealth Management at Northern Trust. Ms. Meck and Ms. Merritt discussed the definition, history and use of trust protectors. What are the types and sources of powers granted to trust protectors as well as whose interests is the trust protector serving? Standards of conduct, who should and who shouldn't serve in this role, and additional issues such as appointing and removing a trust protector, abuse of powers and transparency were included.


Asset Protection Fundamentals presented by Karen L. Brady, Esq., Law Offices of Karen Brady, P.C. Ms. Brady discussed what asset protection is, and what it is not. Entities, Trusts, and other asset protection techniques were covered, as well as other smart strategies for clients interested in protecting their assets. Ms. Brady busted some asset protection myths and discuss the timing of utilizing asset protection strategies.


2017 Tax Update presented by Cathie Asmus, CPA, EA, Coet2 PC CPA's. Ms. Asmus provided an overview of 2017 income tax changes, specifically regulatory, judicial, and legislative changes, as well as a brief overview of the 2018 income tax changes.


Mike Shea, Esq., Law Offices of Michael L. Shea, LLC, presented Benefits Available to Elderly Veterans and Families

Mike is a retired military officer and an attorney accredited to practice before the Veterans Administration and the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. Mike discussed the benefits available to elderly veterans and to their families through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the rules governing the requirements for qualification.


Julie M. Karavas, J.D., LLM-Tax preseneted Succession Planning for Farmers and Ranchers Estate planning for farmers and ranchers requires specialized knowledge in legal and business matters. In addition to general estate planning, it is necessary to consider succession planning of the ag operation to preserve the farm or ranch and other assets the clients have worked their entire lives to acquire and build. Succession planning requires consideration of legal and financial issues, along with family dynamics. In addition to being knowledgeable as to the appropriate estate planning documents, it is necessary to understand estate and income taxes, entity structures, real estate issues, and the use of contracts and leases, and various agricultural issues. The goal is to reconcile personal and business planning to ensure the family farm or ranch will transfer and evolve as the client intends.


Liz Tredennick, Medicare Specialist, and Rose Mary Zapor, Esq., presented Understanding the Basics of Medicare and Long Term Care Medicaid.There are 10,000 people a day in the United States turning 65, the age of Medicare enrollment. Medicare and Medicaid are confusing and complex subjects. They discussed the basics of Medicare and the products that help fill the gaps in coverage, so that you can make the most of your Medicare and discussed the Medicaid programs available, planning for Medicaid, and the eligibility and enrollment rules.