Almost a year after the passage of a massive package of tax changes, the implications are still rippling through the estate planning world. A highlight of the law was the increase in the exemption to $10.5 million for a couple, but more broadly, the act has produced a complete paradigm change. Astute financial advisors will capitalize on these and assume a more central role in the estate planning process.

There is no better forum for getting a sense of what's important now than the Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning, which is set for Jan. 13-17 in Orlando, Fla. To get a sense of the big ideas rumbling through the industry, I polled several of the presenters about their topics.

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