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MasterClass > Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass

General Information

I have been an Estate Planner for a while; do I really need a MasterClass, or would I already know what it's teaching?
Good question, and it is one that we can't answer! The way to find out whether you need the MasterClass is to take this brief, no-obligation quiz to see how you measure up! So far enrollees include Estate Planners who range in experience from the very new to those with more than twenty years of practice.
What is the MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
The MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass is an intensive, broad-based course of study that guides you, step-by-step, through the essentials of estate planning and administration, leading to a certificate of completion*. Designed to be completed at your own pace within three years, the curriculum begins with a curated series of foundational programs taught online by some of the most skilled practitioners in Massachusetts; reinforces your knowledge with specially designed, interactive learning modules; and culminates in a capstone project where, with the guidance of an estate planning mentor, you pull together everything you've learned by outlining an estate plan and assembling the relevant documents. The program is rigorous. In the true spirit of master class-style training, it takes a serious commitment. But its benefits are many - your time and effort are rewarded with an unparalleled educational experience. Find out more about the MasterClass by clicking here.

*The certificate provided reflects only completion of the called-for courses of study. MCLE is a private organization, whose standards are not regulated by a state authority or the American Bar Association. MCLE does not certify the competence or qualifications of anyone who obtains the certificate of completion, nor does it suggest that those who obtain the certificate of completion may hold themselves out as "specialists" under Mass. R. Prof. C. 7.4(b) or as having received certification in estate planning.
Who is the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass designed for?
The Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass is designed exclusively for Estate Planners who subscribe to the MCLE OnlinePass®. It is a comprehensive course of study that benefits Estate Planners at every stage of practice, covering a range of problems and scenarios for which clients in every walk of life need your expertise. Ready to Hone Your Skills and Own Your Expertise? Click here.
Why would I need the MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
If you are interested in honing your estate planning and administration skills to become a more knowledgeable Estate Planner, you'll want to check out what the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass has to offer you. It features a rich and carefully constructed curriculum consisting of six MCLE foundational programs, self-tests, specially-designed interactive learning modules, and a capstone project. If you've ever thought it would be helpful to bounce tough questions off an expert, you'll like the mentoring you get throughout your capstone project. As focused, practical, and interactive pedagogy for CLE goes, we consider it one of MCLE's best ideas yet!
Who is teaching the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
This intensive course of study builds on MCLE programs and publications developed by more than 200 leaders of the Estate Planning bar in Massachusetts. They're among the doyens of the Massachusetts Estate Planning community. We call our teachers "Masters" because their levels of expertise are unsurpassed. They teach the six required BasicsPlus!® courses that provide the foundation for the MasterClass. And they have authored hundreds of pages of the practical guidance published in MCLE's award-winning estate planning book collection. They are boutique practitioners, solos, large and small-firm partners, and in-house counsel for institutions dedicated to wealth management. Click here to meet the Masters.
What topics does the MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass cover?
The MasterClass content is based on six foundational MCLE BasicsPlus!® programs on the fundamentals of estate planning and administration:

• Estate Planning; Estate, Gift & Generation-Skipping Tax;

• Income Taxation of Estates & Trusts;

• Understanding & Using Trusts;

• Will & Trust Drafting; and

• Probate Practice.

It also features six interactive learning modules on topics critical to every estate planning practice - Engagement with Clients; Planning for the Disposition of Property; Wills and Trusts; Planning for Transfer Taxes; Health and Incapacity Planning; Selected Issues in Estate Planning; and Probating an Estate. The modules help reinforce the fundamentals presented in the foundational programs. The MasterClass capstone project blends content from the modules together into a practical, realistic, and compelling fact pattern - the kind your client will bring to your office. Once you have identified the issues in the fact pattern, you select the forms and other documents needed to design an estate plan that addresses the topics and guides your client forward.
It sounds like I'll be generating a lot of documents as part of the MasterClass. Do they become my own work product so that I can further customize them in my "real life" practice?
Absolutely! Your completed work product becomes a valuable take-away. They are all yours, and MCLE has no proprietary right to the content that you have generated. In addition, at the end of the program, you will receive a set of model documents, based on the hypothetical, prepared by an expert in the area. Are you ready to become a MasterClass student? If so, click here to enroll.
Who designed the MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
The MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass builds on the MCLE programs and publications developed by more than 200 Massachusetts Estate Planners. These practitioners are leaders of the estate planning bar dedicated to providing you with an unparalleled educational experience. The capstone project's hypothetical and set of model documents were prepared by Attorney Karen B. Johnson with the assistance of Attorney Renée Y. Rastorfer, experienced practitioners who concentrate in the areas of estate planning and elder law.
I like the idea of an Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass, but I don't know if I should invest in the MCLE OnlinePass®.
The OnlinePass is one of the fastest-growing subscription CLE products in the nation. OnlinePass subscribers find an unprecedented value in being able to access everything MCLE has online for one subscription fee - live and on-demand programs, award-winning practice manuals, forms, checklists, administrative databases, program transcripts, and more! And with its tiered pricing model, the OnlinePass is affordable, even for solos and small-firm lawyers. Interested in knowing more about the OnlinePass, what it would cost, and how to subscribe? Click here.
What is the MasterClass certificate of completion? Why would I want that?
The certificate of completion makes a statement to your clients that you have invested time and effort in your continuing legal education. Once an Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass student completes all assigned programs, self-tests, and learning modules, and has successfully completed the capstone project, they are eligible to receive the MasterClass certificate of completion, along with a badge that can be displayed on their personal social media sites or on their law firm website's pages. Note that the certificate reflects only your completion of the called-for course of study; it is not a certification. MCLE is a private organization whose standards are not regulated by a state authority or the American Bar Association. MCLE does not certify the competence or qualifications of anyone who obtains the certificate of completion, nor does it suggest that those who obtain the certificate of completion may hold themselves out as "specialists" under Mass. R. Prof. C. 7.4(b).

Enrolling in the MasterClass

When can I enroll in the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
There is no enrollment deadline. You can sign up any time and you'll have three years from the date of enrollment to complete the MasterClass.
I have already taken some of MCLE's foundational programs in Estate Planning; would I get "credit" for that?
If you're an MCLE OnlinePass® subscriber and you've already taken one or more of the foundational programs featured in the curriculum, you may have fulfilled some of the requirements toward completing the MasterClass! All you need to do is complete the self-test that accompanies each program. There is no need to repeat the program (unless you want a refresher). It's a way to accelerate your course of study and focus on the foundational topics you have yet to learn. To inspect your personalized transcript that tracks your progress towards fulfilling all the requirements of the MasterClass click here. Then scroll to the Enrollment Fee section of the page; be sure you're logged into your MCLE account to view your transcript.
I don't subscribe to the MCLE OnlinePass®; can I still enroll in the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
The MasterClass is available exclusively to OnlinePass subscribers. Those who already subscribe must keep their subscriptions active throughout their MasterClass course of study. If you're not yet a subscriber, you can subscribe at the same time that you enroll in the MasterClass.
How much does the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass cost?
Tuition for the full course of study, including 72 hours of online instruction, the accompanying self-assessment quizzes, and expert evaluation of your capstone project assignment, is $895 plus a subscription to the MCLE OnlinePass®. This is the entire tuition - there are no hidden costs. And beyond the value you derive from the interactive trainings, assessments, and capstone learning, there is a significant value in being mentored - it is the sort of professional development experience that money can't buy.

In return for your one-time tuition fee of $895, you get:

• Extensive Training. Assure your clients that you have received extensive training in estate planning and administration matters and distinguish yourself from other practitioners.

• Results-Oriented Learning. After completing the programs and modules, analyze a hypothetical fact pattern, prepare an estate plan, and assemble related documents so as to maximize your learning and demonstrate your skills.

• Personalized Expert Feedback. Receive one-on-one feedback throughout the capstone project from an experienced estate planning attorney. Your mentor guides you - personally - to a deeper understanding of the concepts and techniques you need to know. A unique learning proposition!

• Model Documents and Essential Forms to Build Your Practice. Download the sample documents used in the learning modules, and access over 1,000 other estate planning checklists and forms available through your MCLE OnlinePass subscription. At the end of the program, receive a model set of expertly-prepared documents pertaining to the capstone hypothetical.

• A Certificate of Completion and Website Badge. Obtain your certificate of completion, suitable for framing, and a badge that you can post to your website. Both the certificate of completion and the badge display the year in which you complete the program.

• Directed Ongoing Learning - Even After Your Course is Completed. Keep your MasterClass certificate of completion up to date and stay abreast of developments in the law by maintaining your MCLE OnlinePass subscription and attending MCLE's annual Estate Planning Conference.

• An Opportunity to Learn at Your Own Pace. Complete your MasterClass at your convenience within three years.

Using the MasterClass

Who will my MasterClass mentor be?
We can't answer that question just yet, as mentors are not preassigned to MasterClass students, but are assigned to each student when they begin their capstone project. You will receive an email from MCLE after beginning your capstone project with the name and email address of your mentor. MasterClass mentors are typically dedicated MCLE volunteers who have taught MCLE classes or written MCLE book chapters.
Is there any opportunity for me to make connections with or benefit from the questions of other MasterClass students as we learn together?
Yes! With our decades of pedagogical content development for CLE, the MCLE staff has learned the value of sharing Q&A among students. As MCLE OnlinePass® subscribers, all MasterClass students have access to the MCLE OnlineCommunity. We encourage you to take advantage of the OnlineCommunity forum to post your questions and connect with other MasterClass students.
How can I measure my learning with the MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
All six required foundational BasicsPlus!® programs are accompanied by a self-test that MasterClass students must complete as part of the course requirements. These self-tests help to reinforce the concepts and lessons learned in the respective program. In addition, each online learning module features quizzes interspersed throughout to help you retain what you've learned. Plus, as part of the MasterClass, each student is paired with an expert estate planner to guide you through the final, capstone project and offer personalized, one-on-one mentoring. You learn in a supportive, constructive, highly interactive environment.
How long will it take me to complete the MCLE Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
You can take the MasterClass at your own pace over the course of three years. Because you access the content online, you can design your own schedule for completing the requirements. It is up to you how quickly you'll get through the modules and complete the capstone project - as long as you are all done within three years.
How can I keep track of my progress throughout the Estate Planning & Administration MasterClass?
Throughout the MasterClass, MCLE will keep track of your progress on your individualized MasterClass transcript at
Where do I find the MasterClass programs and learning modules on the MCLE website?
Go to (make sure you're signed in to your MCLE account). On that page, you can use your transcript to access each of the MasterClass requirements. Once you complete a set of requirements (e.g., all foundational programs and accompanying self-tests), the next set of requirements (e.g., the learning modules) will be made accessible. Upon completion of the learning modules, you will be matched with a mentor and can begin your final project. Instructions for the capstone will be made available at that time.
How do I find the self-tests for each foundational program in the MasterClass?
Go to (make sure you're signed in to your MCLE account). On that page, select the program's title to go to that program's eprogram page. On that page, you'll see a "Test What You Learned" link.
What happens after I submit my capstone project?
You will receive an email from MCLE to schedule a meeting with your mentor at a mutually-convenient time. The meeting will take place online, via Zoom. At that time, you will receive a model set of expertly-prepared documents pertaining to the hypothetical fact pattern.