Qualifications for Membership
An individual in any of the following categories is eligible for admission as a Member of the Council:
(a) An attorney who (1) is currently admitted to practice law in the State of Indiana; (2) has practiced law for at least five (5) years before applying or being nominated for admission as a Member; and (3) devotes a significant portion of his or her professional time to one or more of the following areas of law: probate, estate planning, elder law, or estate and trust litigation.
(b) A certified public accountant who (1) is licensed under the Indiana Public Accountancy statute; (2) is engaged in public practice; (3) has practiced as a full-time CPA for at least five (5) years before applying or being nominated for admission as a Member; and (4) has participated in the counseling of clients with respect to estate planning.
(c) An insurance and financial advisor who (1) has at least five (5) years of full-time experience in the professional use of life insurance products and similar products in estate planning before being nominated for admission as a Member; (2) holds a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university; and (3) is a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Certified Financial Planner (CFP), or Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) or has other experience or educational or business qualifications that, in the Board’s judgment, demonstrate significant skill in and a commitment to the professional use of life insurance products and similar products in estate planning.
(d)) A trust officer (whether or not the individual has that official job title) who (1) holds a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university; (2) is engaged in trust or estate administration, related supporting services or business development for a bank or trust company that is authorized by law to exercise trust powers; and (3) has at least five (5) years of significant work experience in estate and trust administration or trust advisory work before being nominated for admission as a Member.
(e) An individual (including but not limited to a financial planner or investment advisor) who (1) has a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university; (2) has at least five (5) years of work experience before applying or being nominated for admission as a Member, and (3) has work experience that, in the Board’s judgment, includes a reasonable amount of time devoted to estate planning and administration as a part of the estate planning team.
The purpose of these requirements is to make membership in the Council available to individuals who have demonstrated experience and professional skill in advising and assisting clients with estate planning and a commitment to devoting a significant part of their time and energy to estate planning. The Board of Directors is authorized to apply the foregoing standards to all nominees and applicants in a fair, flexible, and reasonable manner. To that end, the Board, in its discretion, may determine which of the above five categories best fits a particular nominee or applicant, and may interpret the foregoing standards flexibly, so that a particular nominee’s or applicant’s significant and actual professional experience is treated as satisfying the spirit of the requirements, even if that nominee or applicant lacks an official professional credential (for example, CFP, CLU, CFA) or a post-high-school degree that is a specific requirement in the relevant subsection of this Section.