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Courses: CETA

Certificate in Estate and Trust Administration (CETA) [Download]

 

The CETA Program

STEP Canada, the leading educator of Canadian trust and estate professionals, is pleased to announce its new certificate in estate and trust administration (CETA). This innovative educational offering is designed to enhance the knowledge and performance of Canadian estate administrators, trust officers, junior trust officers, retail bankers, law clerks, junior associates, paralegals, wealth management sales representatives, and administrative assistants working in the area of estates and trusts.

CETA will be of value to individuals who want to advance their careers and employers who want to avail themselves of the many business opportunities resulting from today’s changing demographics. Organizations staffed by knowledgeable estate administrators and trust officers who can skillfully manage this changing market will attract new opportunities and clients.

STEP’s self-study online CETA program, which is presented in English, consists of three courses and a final examination. The program includes tutorial support, self-assessment quizzes, and social media networking. Students who enrol in the complete CETA program are expected to finish it within four years and achieve a minimum grade of 60 percent. Single-course registration is available for the foundational curriculum only.

 

Who can benefit from the CETA program?

  • trust officers
  • junior trust officers
  • estate and trust administrators
  • law clerks
  • junior associates
  • paralegals
  • wealth management sales representatives
  • administrative assistants
  • retail bankers

 

The three courses

CETA 1: Foundations of estate and trust administration*
On successful completion, students will be able to

  • compare the roles and responsibilities of personal representatives,trustees, agents, and substitute decision makers;
  • determine the validity of a testamentary document;
  • identify, value, and safeguard estate assets and liabilities
  • identify the beneficiaries of an estate;
  • identify the tax returns required on death;
  • ensure that estate and trust administrative records are maintained; and
  • calculate the compensation for personal representatives
Tuition
$795 + taxes

Suggested study time
60-80 hours

Online examination
2 hours
multiple choice
true/false questions
matching questions

Launch date
November 2014

Membership
not required

*Where applicable, both the common law and the Quebec Civil Code are addressed.

 

CETA 2: Advanced topics in estate and trust administration*
On successful completion, students will be able to

  • explain the rules that govern the interpretation of a will or trust,
  • explain spousal and dependant rights on death,
  • explain the uses of personal trusts and summarize the legal requirements,
  • determine if a valid trust has been created,
  • explain and provide examples of trustee duties and powers,
  • explain the rules that govern breach of trust, and
  • explain the requirements to vary or terminate a trust
Tuition
$595 + taxes

Suggested study time
30-50 hours

Online examination
2 hours
multiple choice
true/false questions
matching questions
short-answer questions
case study questions

Launch date
June 2015

Membership
affiliate status required

*Where applicable, both the common law and the Quebec Civil Code are addressed.

 

CETA 3: Estate and trust taxation
On successful completion, students will be able to

  • summarize the basic rules for taxation of an individual,
  • summarize the attribution rules,
  • explain the post mortem planning opportunities to minimize taxation in the year of death,
  • summarize the rules for taxation of income in a trust
  • explain the elections available when filing a T3 trust return,
  • identify potential US and other foreign tax liabilities, and
  • explain the Canada Revenue Agency’s administrative role and enforcement powers.
Tuition
$595 + taxes

Suggested study time
30-50 hours

Online examination
2 hours
multiple choice
true/false questions
matching questions
short-answer questions
case study questions

Launch date
December 2015

Membership
affiliate status required

 

Certification examination

Examination format and preparation
The examination is based on the learning objectives of the three certificate courses and the knowledge that students have acquired in these courses; there are no additional materials. In the context of case studies, students will be expected to identify the relevant issues, apply the applicable law, and demonstrate administrative decision-making skills.

Tuition
$295 + taxes

Suggested preparation
In-depth review of three
certificate courses,
self-assessments, and
study guide

Online examination
3 hours
essay-style answers
true/false questions
matching questions
short-answer questions
case study questions

Examination date
September 2019

Membership
affiliate status required

 

Tuition and enrolment

Total tuition for the three courses and the certificate examination is $2,280 plus applicable annual membership fees. Single-course enrolment (available for foundations of estate and trust administration only) is $795. All prices are subject to tax.

Tuition fees include

  • online core study text,
  • tutorial support,
  • study support,
  • Q & A reference,
  • self-assessment quizzes,
  • social media networking,
  • examination and marking, and
  • STEP certificate of completion.

This certificate does not carry any letter designation or title but does confirm successful completion of the CETA program. Students who complete the foundational course only will receive a STEP Canada document of course completion. Students who pursue affiliate membership to complete the full CETA certificate program will receive full affiliate member benefits while enrolled in the courses and upon completion, a STEP Canada CETA certificate. Subsequently, students may choose to remain affiliate members or continue into the four-courses* of the STEP Canada Assessment by Exam for eventual technician and then full membership in STEP which proceeds to the globally recognized STEP trust and estate practitioner designation, TEP.

*CETA certificate holders receive advance standing to course number three of the STEP Canada Assessment by Exam, wills, trust and estate administration.

 

How to enrol

Go to My STEP, in the Education section click on Enroll in a Course and follow the easy instructions to enrol.

 

Benefits on completion

Successful students will emerge from the CETA program with

  • a certificate of completion from STEP Canada, which denotes excellence in the industry;
  • professional recognition as a specialist in estate and trust management;
  • the ability to confidently manage estate and trust accounts of various sizes;
  • a specialized understanding of estate and trust management, trustee duties and powers, and estate and trust taxation;
  • extended opportunities for employment and advancement;
  • an enhanced ability to serve clients; and
  • international recognition within STEP.

 

Course author

Kathleen Cunningham, B.Comm, LLB, MPS, TEP
Kathleen Cunningham has over 25 years’ experience in the estate and trust industry. Over her career, she has led the policy and risk management division of a large national trust company, developed and delivered educational programs to trust specialists across Canada, and spearheaded numerous industry responses to proposed federal and provincial legislation affecting executors, trustees, and substitute decision makers in Canada. In 2010, she joined the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee of British Columbia, where she assists with the implementation of adult guardianship legislation and projects related to the financial abuse of vulnerable adults.

Kathleen is the national chair of the STEP Canada Trust and Estate Technical Committee and is a past chair of the STEP Canada Education Committee and the STEP Vancouver Branch. In 2007, she co-chaired STEP Canada’s symposium on the reform of trust law in Canada. Kathleen is a past director of the British Columbia Law Institute and a former member of two British Columbia Law Institute committees: Modernization of the Trustee Act (BC) and Recommended Practices for Wills Practitioners Relating to Potential Undue Influence. She is a frequent speaker at STEP conferences, professional continuing education programs, and community education events.

A graduate of the University of British Columbia, where she obtained a bachelor of commerce and a bachelor of laws degree, Kathleen also holds a masters degree in policy studies from the University of New South Wales, Australia; a graduate Assessment by Exam in social innovation from the University of Waterloo; and the British Columbia instructor's diploma.

 

CETA program advisory committee

  • Gillian Musk, TEP, BMO Harris Private Banking; chair, STEP Canada CETA Program Advisory Committee
  • Teresa Acs, Scotiatrust
  • Paul Fensom, TEP, Scotiatrust
  • Thomas Grozinger, TEP, RBC Wealth Management
  • Rose Kottis, Borden Ladner Gervais LLP; president, Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario
  • Laurie Lord, TEP, TD Wealth
  • Arlene McGuire, TEP, CIBC Trust Corporation
  • Sara Plant, TEP, MD Private Trust
  • Patricia Robinson, TEP, Goodmans LLP
  • Janice Vohrah, RBC Wealth Management
  • Corina Weigl, TEP, Fasken Martineau LLP
  • Peter Weissman, TEP, Cadesky and Associates LLP; chair, STEP Canada Education Committee

 

Membership requirements and benefits

No membership required for

  • CETA 1: foundations of estate and trust administration

Affiliate membership required for

  • CETA 2: advanced topics in estate and trust administration
  • CETA 3: estate and trust taxation
  • CETA certification examination

Affiliate Membership Benefits
Currently, affiliate members receive the same robust benefits that full members (TEPs) receive from STEP Canada and STEP Worldwide. For a complete list of offerings please click here.

 

Bridging CETA to TEP designation - career progression

LEVEL Credits Needed to Advance Credit Sources Membership Status & Annual Fee
ENTRY 60 credits
  • CETA 1: foundations of estate and trust administration = 30 credits
  • One year wealth industry work experience or designation = 30 credits
Non-member
$0/year
CPD requirement: no
AFFILIATE 60 credits
  • CETA 2: advanced topics in estate and trust administration = 10 credits (prerequisite: CETA 1)
  • CETA 3: estate and trust taxation = 10 credits (prerequisite: CETA 2)
  • Certification examination = 10 credits (prerequisite: CETA 1,2+3)
  • Assessment by Exam course 1: law of trusts = 30 credits
Affiliate member
$200/year
CPD requirement: yes
TECHNICIAN 60 credits
  • Assessment by Exam course 2: taxation of trusts and estates = 30 credits
  • Assessment by Exam course 3: wills, trust and estate administration (advance standing awarded to CETA graduates)
  • Assessment by Exam course 4: trust and estate planning = 30 credits
Technician member
$200/year
CPD requirement: yes
PRACTICE 60 credits
  • 2 years of relevant wealth industry work experience = 60 credits
  • Student remains at technician membership status while completing work experience
Technician member
$200/year
CPD requirement: yes
TEP CANDIDATE Total of 240 combined credits Once 240 credits is achieved, technician may apply to upgrade to full membership (TEP)
Full member (TEP)
$475/year

 

 

Frequently asked questions

Please click here for a list of frequently asked questions.

 

Rules and regulations

Please click here to view the CETA program rules and regulation.

 

Testimonials

“We are thrilled with the response that we are getting about the launch of the new CETA program and have been working hard to build this in-demand, specialized offering for estate and trust professionals. Upon completion, students have gained professional recognition and will have an enhanced ability to service clients in today’s dynamic market,” said Gillian Musk, TEP, National Director Fiduciary Trust Management at BMO Harris Private Banking and Chair of STEP Canada CETA Program Advisory Committee.

“The CETA certificate will provide individuals with an industry recognized level of knowledge to support their entry into the Estate & Trust profession,”
added Paul Fensom, TEP and member of the Estate Planning Council of Toronto.

 

 

 



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