About This Class
This course examines the statutory and judicial rules governing the gratuitous transfer of property. This includes transfers by gift, intestate succession, wills, trusts, and other non-probate mechanisms. Topics include the nature of inheritance; statutes of descent and distribution (intestacy); wills formalities (execution, revocation, mental capacity, and undue influence); interpretation of wills; the protection of the family (spousal elective share, omitted spouse rules, and omitted children rules); the creation of trusts; rights of trust beneficiaries and their creditors; charitable trusts; modification and termination of trusts; fiduciary duties; powers of appointment; and future interests. Class discussion focuses on problems designed to explore statutory and judicial rules, policy and theory, and practical implications.
The method of evaluation will be: final exam, class participation, and quizzes.