Online Class: Estate Planning

Anyone who has assets, no matter how small or wants their medical wishes carried out should have an estate plan. If you have no easily identifiable heirs, the lack of a proper estate plan and/or will could result in all your property ending up in the hands of the government rather than in the hands of those you designate.

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  • 11
  • 12
    Exams &
  • 2,809
    have taken this course
  • 7
    average time
  • 0.7

Course Description

Navigating the Landscape of Estate Planning: Protecting Your Legacy

Once regarded as a domain exclusive to the opulent, estate planning has evolved beyond being just a buzzword for the affluent. The contemporary world, with its intricate web of financial and personal relationships, has brought to the fore the critical importance of estate planning for one and all.

It's a simple truth: every individual, regardless of the size or nature of their assets, desires to have some control over what happens to their possessions, assets, and, most importantly, their health decisions when they no longer can. However, misconceptions abound, with many mistakenly believing that a basic life insurance policy or a verbal agreement with family members is enough. Such an approach, sadly, leaves many aspects of one's legacy at the mercy of legal systems and, in some cases, the state.

Consider a hypothetical scenario: James, a diligent saver throughout his life, assumes his life insurance policy will cover everything after his passing. He has verbally expressed his wishes regarding his assets to his children. However, on his unexpected demise, disputes arise between family members about the house he owned, his vintage car collection, and his hard-earned savings. Without a written, legally-backed estate plan, James's wishes remain largely unenforceable.

Similarly, in the domain of medical decisions, imagine the anguish of a family, unsure of a loved one's desires concerning life support or medical interventions during a terminal illness. An appropriate estate plan, encompassing a Living Will, can articulate these wishes clearly, preventing such heart-wrenching dilemmas.

It's easy to understand why many shy away from estate planning. Addressing one's mortality and making decisions regarding assets posthumously can be daunting. Others might feel rushed to "get it done" without proper contemplation, a move riddled with potential oversights and mistakes. Yet, the true essence of estate planning is neither morbid nor a hurried checkbox exercise. At its heart, it's a thoughtful process of ensuring that your life's work, values, and desires continue to influence and benefit your loved ones and causes close to your heart.

Course Highlights:

  1. The Basics of Estate Planning: Dive deep into the essentials of estate planning, understanding its significance beyond just the distribution of wealth.

  2. Power of Attorney: Grasp the pivotal role and implications of designating a power of attorney – someone to make decisions when you're unable to.

  3. Crafting Your Will: Navigate the intricacies of establishing a Will in Testament, ensuring that your possessions are allocated as per your desires.

  4. The Living Will: Engage with the nuances of a Living Will, emphasizing your medical preferences in situations where you might be unable to communicate them.

  5. Trust Funds & Charitable Giving: Learn the mechanisms of setting up trust funds and the rewarding process of integrating philanthropy into your estate plans.

  6. Asset Inventory: Acquire strategies to methodically catalog your assets, an indispensable step in the planning process.

  7. Special Considerations for Singles: Delve into unique requirements and considerations vital for individuals without immediate familial dependencies.

Indeed, the process of estate planning can seem overwhelming, but with the right guidance, it becomes a seamless journey of safeguarding your legacy. This course is meticulously crafted to illuminate this journey. By its conclusion, you'll possess a comprehensive understanding of how to ensure your desires, both material and moral, are upheld.

By embracing the knowledge within this course, you're not merely planning for an inevitable end. Instead, you're crafting a legacy, a lasting message of your values, desires, and love for those you leave behind. Thus, with your future affairs set in stone, you can redirect your energies towards the beautiful present, living each day to its zenith.

  • Completely Online
  • Self-Paced
  • Printable Lessons
  • Full HD Video  
  • 6 Months to Complete
  • 24/7 Availability
  • Start Anytime
  • PC & Mac Compatible
  • Android & iOS Friendly
  • Accredited CEUs
Universal Class is an IACET Accredited Provider

Course Lessons

Average Lesson Rating:
4.5 / 5 Stars (Average Rating)
"Extraordinarily Helpful"
(1,520 votes)

Lesson 1: Estate Planning Basics

This lesson will give you a basic understanding of what estate planning is. It outlines the essential tools of estate planning, each of which will be covered in greater detail in later lessons. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 1 Video
  • Lesson discussions: Reasons for Taking this Course
  • Complete Assignment: An Introduction
  • Assessment: Lesson 1 Exam

Lesson 2: Why Estate Planning is Important for Everyone

Skimping on planning now could cause great distress and difficulty for your family and friends later on. In this lesson we will talk about why estate planning is important for everyone. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 2 Video
  • Lesson discussions: Have a will?
  • Assessment: Lesson 2 Exam

Lesson 3: The Major Elements of Estate Planning

By being aware of the major elements of estate planning and the sub-categories of estate planning, you can start building your plan with clear direction. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 3 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 3 Exam

Lesson 4: Taking Inventory of Your Assets

A large part of planning for the distribution of your assets is taking inventory of what you have. This is such an important process that there are several computer software programs devoted to this task alone. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 4 Video
  • Lesson discussions: Organ Donation
  • Assessment: Lesson 4 Exam

Lesson 5: Does Everyone Need a Will? Yes!--Here's Why

This lesson will address some of the excuses people use to avoid making a will and the reasons why those excuses are not valid; it will also discuss what happens if you have a will and what could happen if you do not. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 5 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 5 Exam

Lesson 6: Estate Planning and Tax Facts

Whether you decide to use a lawyer or CPA or not, you can educate yourself on current tax laws and use this lesson to get a good basic understanding of how to save yourself unnecessary estate taxes. 7 Total Points
  • Lesson 6 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 6 Exam

Lesson 7: What You Need to Know About Trusts

There are many types of trusts that can be used in estate planning for a variety of reasons and benefits. In this lesson we will discuss what trusts are and how they are different. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 7 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 7 Exam

Lesson 8: Speaking to Loved Ones and Friends about Your Estate Plan

Talking to loved ones about your estate plan before you die will clarify things and help avoid any misunderstandings among those you love. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 8 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 8 Exam

Lesson 9: Charitable Trusts

Charitable trusts are not only a wonderful way to support organizations doing excellent work for a cause you believe in, but also a preferred way to avoid paying over inflated, estate taxes to the government. 9 Total Points
  • Lesson 9 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 9 Exam

Lesson 10: Estate Planning for Singles

This last lesson is devoted to estate planning for the particular needs of those who are currently unmarried, not in a serious long-term relationship and/or intend to remain unmarried. 10 Total Points
  • Lesson 10 Video
  • Assessment: Lesson 10 Exam

Lesson 11: Course Conclusion

We have included a sample estate planning questionnaire from the American Bar Association's guide to Wills and estates. This form offers insight into what basic information an attorney would ask you when starting or creating an estate plan for you and you 47 Total Points
  • Lesson 11 Video
  • Lesson discussions: Completing the Task; Program Evaluation Follow-up Survey (End of Course); Course Comments
  • Assessment: The Final Exam
Total Course Points

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Describe why estate planning is important for everyone.
  • Describe the major elements of estate planning.
  • Take inventory of your assets.
  • Describe why a will is important.
  • Summarize estate planning and tax facts.
  • Describe what trusts are.
  • Describe charitable trusts.
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.

Additional Course Information

Online CEU Certificate
  • Document Your Lifelong Learning Achievements
  • Earn an Official Certificate Documenting Course Hours and CEUs
  • Verify Your Certificate with a Unique Serial Number Online
  • View and Share Your Certificate Online or Download/Print as PDF
  • Display Your Certificate on Your Resume and Promote Your Achievements Using Social Media
Document Your CEUs on Your Resume
Course Title: Estate Planning
Course Number: 8900059
Lessons Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars (1,520 votes)
Languages: English - United States, Canada and other English speaking countries
Availability: This course is online and available in all 50 states including: California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Texas.
Last Updated: October 2023
Course Type: Self-Paced, Online Class
CEU Value: 0.7 IACET CEUs (Continuing Education Units)
CE Accreditation: Universal Class, Inc. has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).
Grading Policy: Earn a final grade of 70% or higher to receive an online/downloadable CEU Certification documenting CEUs earned.
Assessment Method: Lesson assignments and review exams
Instructor: John Chouinard
Syllabus: View Syllabus
Course Fee: $120.00 U.S. dollars

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Student Testimonials

  • "I truly enjoyed this course and its presentation of videos." -- Wanda G.
  • "Thank you, greatly appreciated the course and the opportunity to do it." -- Barbara K.
  • "Great course, gave me lots of useful ideas, thanks for creating these courses." -- Ilana C.
  • "Great instructor. I learned a lot!" -- Amy F.
  • "Overall, this course took the mystery out of 'estate planning'. It clarified the whole process, listing the basic areas of estate planning, and broken down into the specific groups. It made me feel as though estate planning is something that I could understand much more easily!" -- Marianne C.
  • "I found this class very useful with a very compassiate instructor, but for me this class was very emotional." -- Ellen L.
  • "The course was very helpful and the instructor responded to my needs just on time." -- Ana P.
  • "Excellent, well organized. The overall course in general, very informative and gives you things to explore that an average person wouldn't think to." -- Marjorie C.
  • "All of it was helpful." -- Janet C.
  • "What was most helpful was the lesson on trusts, and the assignments were compelling to the student to make progress in their own estate planning." -- Kelly C.