Certificate in Trust: Advanced (ABA)


The estimated time to complete the 15 required courses is approximately 14 hours.

For the experienced professional, this online program, or immersive school, provides an in-depth understanding of the fiduciary role, and prepares wealth and trust professionals to propose sophisticated solutions to complex client situations covering estate planning, trust administration, investment management concepts and ethical behavior.  For those wishing to earn the CTFA professional designation, the ABA Certificate in Trust: Advanced satisfies the third of three levels of study required to sit for the exam.

You must complete the following courses:

Asset Allocation and Portfolio Management
Describes the purpose of the customer profile information collected for investment policies, and how model portfolios are matched to customer profiles. Shows how to distinguish between positive and negative correlation in portfolio diversification. Describes investment styles and strategies that can be applied to equity portfolios and diversify fixed-income portfolios.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Describe the portfolio management process and typical customer profiles
• Describe asset allocation concepts and strategies
• Describe diversification concepts and strategies

Economics & Markets
Explains the macro-economic forces that affect financial markets and investment portfolios enabling advisors to have a deeper conversation about these topics with clients. Introduces the important relationship between interest rates and inflation, and explores the causes and effects of inflation and how inflation is measured.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Describe the relationships between macro-economic forces and financial markets
• Explain how the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) affects the business cycle
• Describe how changes in interest rates affect financial markets and investors
• Describe how inflation affects GDP and investor buying decisions
• Distinguish between the government’s fiscal policy and the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy

Education Planning Solutions for Minors
Explains the advantages and disadvantages and tax implications of the 529 Plan and Coverdell accounts. Covers the benefits and drawbacks, including the tax implications of custodial accounts. Describes the fundamentals of 2503(c) trusts and Crummey trusts, including the advantages, disadvantages, and the tax implications of the trusts.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Discuss the use of qualified state tuition plans
• Explain how a Coverdell Education Savings Account can be used for college savings
• Discuss the role of custodial accounts
• Describe the use of 2503(c) trusts
• Explain how Crummey Trusts can be used in estate planning

Estate Planning for Charitable Giving
Describes proven charitable techniques to accomplish estate and financial planning objectives and the characteristics and tax advantages of charitable remainder trusts, charitable lead trusts, and pooled income funds. Explains how to apply for exemption status and filing and reporting requirements.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Define and describe the characteristics of split-interest charitable trusts
• Explain the tax considerations for exempt and nonexempt charitable trusts

Estate Planning for IRAs and Qualified Plan Balances
Explains how to identify mandatory distribution rules for deductible IRAs and qualified plans. Describes the beneficiary options available and ways to distribute benefits for qualified plans and IRAs. Outlines the requirements for qualifying for the marital deduction, and how to fund a credit shelter trust with proceeds from a qualified plan or IRA. Describes how pecuniary bequests to charities should be funded, and the use of charitable remainder trusts as the designated beneficiary of a qualified plan or IRA.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Analyze the tax consequences and distribution options when retirement plan benefits are payable to a trust
• Explain how retirement benefits are coordinated with the estate plan
• Examine the issues concerning making retirement plan benefits payable to a credit shelter or marital trust
• Describe charitable gift opportunities for retirement plan balances

Estate Planning for the Marital Deduction
Explains factors that affect planning for the marital deduction trust and the tax impact of the marital deduction and transfer tax credits. Describes advantages of a pecuniary bequest, factors to consider for a nonformula pecuniary bequest, and the benefit of the formula pecuniary clause.  Discusses advantages and disadvantages of pecuniary credit shelter bequests and nonformula fractional share bequest.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Recognize the importance of planning for the marital deduction
• Explain the various marital formulas and how they can be used in estate planning

Estate Planning Solutions for the Business Owner
Examines planning for successors, and valuing stock of closely held businesses, and guidelines for application. Describes actions to freeze estate value, and deferral of estate tax. Describes lifetime gifts, outlines the benefits and pitfalls of buy-sell agreements. Explores the ESOP transaction, tax implications, and benefits, and administering S corporation interests.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Describe the estate planning challenges for owners of closely held businesses
• Identify methods used in valuing closely held businesses, determining discounts, and structuring restrictive agreements
• Explain corporate recapitalization and the utilization of freezing and deferral techniques
• Describe the planning methods available for the effective transfer of privately owned businesses

Fundamentals of Alternative Investment Products
Explains types of real estate investments and how they are valued. Identifies benefits and risks of foreign investments. Explores options, futures and forward contracts, and swap agreements. Describes exchange traded funds (ETFs) and common trust funds. Explains general and limited partnerships, and ways to identify the characteristics of closely held corporations.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Describe alternative types of investments to clients, including the following:
o Hedge Funds
o Private equity
o Real Estate
• Describe derivatives to clients, including the following:
o Options
o Futures and forward contracts
o Swaps
o ETFs
• Describe alternative investment formats to clients, including the following:
o Common trust funds
o Partnerships
o Closely held corporations

Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax
Teaches how to explain the generation-skipping transfer tax to clients. This course describes the transfer categories—taxable terminations, taxable distributions, and direct skips, and the available exceptions and how they are applied. This course explains how allocations are used in GST tax exemptions and discusses timely allocations and tax returns. This course explores the possible difficulties of making late allocations of filings. It explains the automatic allocation rules with respect to property transfers. This course also describes the concepts used in calculating the tax. This
course discusses differences between GST tax on taxable terminations, taxable distributions, and direct skips, and describes the treatment of effective date rules for trusts.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Define key terms related to GST
• Identify the transfer categories, exceptions, and exclusions for generation-skipping tax
• Explain the benefits of the generation-skipping transfer exemption and allocations in estate planning
• Describe the concepts associated with calculating the GST tax

Gift Taxation
Illustrates how to compute the gift tax, identifies who is liable to pay gift tax, and the impact of gift taxation on powers of appointment. Explores the benefits of a lifetime gift program and disadvantages of lifetime gifts. Demonstrates shifting income with gifting, and options for adults to retain control of property transferred to a minor. Emphasizes the importance of the marital deduction in estate planning.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Describe the basics of gift taxation
• Explain the exclusions and gifting options
• Describe the rules and advantages of the marital deduction

Income Tax Planning
Explains rules for calculating the taxable income computation, using expenses as deductions regarding taxable income, and how to compute alternative minimum tax. Examines tax considerations with capital gains and losses and examples of exclusions from gross income. Describes the benefits of gifting and how to treat passive activity tax situations. Explains the advantages of tax credits, how estimated tax is calculated, and considerations for a decedent’s final tax return.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Explain the components associated with computing income tax
• Define gross income
• Describe gifting techniques used to avoid or minimize income tax
• Identify the tax-saving planning options available for your clients

Managing Life Insurance Policies
Describes the use of life insurance as a financial tool. It explains how to determine if a cash value policy is right for a client, and discusses the appropriate use of policy illustrations. This course also outlines how to manage the death benefit option in a universal life policy, and the type of expenses associated with variable universal life policies. This course describes how wealth accumulates in variable universal life policies.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Explain the responsibilities a fiduciary needs to consider when managing life insurance
• Describe the management of universal life policies including expenses and wealth accumulation
• Explain the expenses associated with life insurance policies and how contracts are funded

Planning for Estate Tax
Explains types of property included in a gross estate and assets not included, estate tax rules concerning jointly owned property and transfers of property to another individual, how allowable deductions are identified and subtracted from the value of the gross estate, and an illustration and examples of estate tax calculations.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Identify assets that are included in the gross estate
• Identify expenses that can be deducted from the gross estate
• Explain how the estate tax is calculated

Prudent Portfolio Management
Outlines characteristics of a prudent portfolio manager, factors that demonstrate prudence in a court of law, and investment standards put forth in the Uniform Prudent Investor Act. Explores potential tax ramifications of diversification and how the purpose of the Uniform Principal and Income Act can be achieved.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Explain the Prudent Person Rule
• Describe the standards put forth in the Uniform Prudent Investor Rule and the Uniform Principal and Income Act

Special Needs Trusts
Upon application and verification, the federal government may pay supplemental security income to certain handicapped individuals with limited earning power. Learn how a special needs trust can protect current or anticipated family funds without jeopardizing SSI.

After completing this course, students will be able to:
• Describe how special needs trusts are used to meet client objectives
• Describe the planning process for creating special needs trusts




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