A few weeks ago, I tearily waved good-bye to my daughter as she embarked on a 1-year fellowship in London. The trip had to be delayed a year due to COVID-19, but my daughter, like many others who were forced to put off their plans to live, travel or work abroad, was now able to move forward. As infection rates start to decline and more countries open their borders, practitioners may be called on to do an increased amount of international estate planning.
Our International Practice Committee Report includes articles that deal with some common issues that clients encounter. For example, those practitioners with clients who are foreign executives or professionals who come to the United States for work need to make sure those clients comply with the applicable tax laws and reporting obligations. “Journey to the West,” p. 70, by J. Andrew P. Stone and Eric Huang outlines those requirements. And U.S. clients who have foreign trusts may decide to domesticate those trusts by moving them back to the United States. “Pre-Residency Planning for Your Client’s Trust,” p. 74, by Dina Kapur Sanna, Carl A. Merino and Sarah B. Jacobson, explains all the complexities involved in doing just that. U.S. clients who own foreign property have their own set of tax rules to follow, which are explained in “U.S. Estate Planners and Foreign Property: Part I,” p. 56, by Melvin B. Warshaw and Trang Fernandez-Leenknecht.
International planning can affect clients with varying levels of net worth, but some practitioners specialize in helping clients with assets above the $25-$30 million range, which is why Trusts & Estates has a “High-Net-Worth Families and Family Offices” editorial advisory committee dedicated to those clients. But it’s been brought to our attention that a more accurate term for this group is “ultra-high-net-worth.” You may notice that we’ve changed the name of that committee to reflect this difference. And we’ve added a new member to that committee—Domingo P. Such III, a partner at Perkins Coie in Chicago.