Trust, Estate and Insurance Planning for Art Collections

Date: Thursday, May 1, 2014
Time: 7:30am - 9:00am
Location: Spinelli's Restaurant (Second Floor, Lakeside Room), Route 1, Lynnfield, MA
Speaker: Katja Zigerlig, VP, Fine Arts, Wine & Jewelry Insurance, AIG Private Client Group

Please join the Essex County Estate Planning Council for our May 1, 2014 event - Trust, Estate and Insurance Planning for Art Collections*, featuring speaker Katja Zigerlig, Vice President, Fine Arts, Wine & Jewelry Insurance, AIG Private Client Group. 


Many high net worth individuals accumulate substantial assets in the form of art, furniture, antiques and jewelry. Often these collectors will forgo insurance due to concerns over tax repercussions. However, if collections are to be included in one’s estate plans, proper insurance can be a valuable benefit.

This course reviews the current estate and gift tax laws and the potential impact on art collectors. We will also review various estate planning mechanisms collectors can consider to reduce their tax exposures. These include charitable distributions, inter vivo trusts, testamentary trusts and other strategies. We will also discuss tax fraud and the “empty hook” scenario—how heirs suffer when they eventually try and sell artwork that was clandestinely removed from the estate. Finally, we will discuss the importance of a comprehensive private collections insurance policy to protect the art assets in the collector’s estate.

Insurance brokers and financial advisors serving high net worth individuals for property and casualty insurance are in a pivotal position to help their clients protect their collections. Art collections are not only culturally and aesthetically valuable, but are a tangible asset that should be included as part of a client’s proactive estate management plan.  

Course Objectives

As a result of this course, participants will:

  • Recognize the fears collectors may not articulate when they decline to insure their valuables  
  • Understand the current estate and gift tax and the implications on collectors who file taxes in the United States
  • Identify some of the estate management options collectors have to minimize their tax burden and maximize deductions   
  • Explain the detriments of the “empty hook” approach to collection dispersion 
  • Advise on the importance of a comprehensive private collections insurance policy as a key element of wealth management
  • Learn how to advise clients that art insurance is an aid, not a barrier, to estate management.‚Äč

A continental breakfast will be served from 7:30-8am, and will be followed by our distinguished speaker. 

* CFP's and CPA's are eligible for 1 CE credit for this course. Please have your license number available at the time of the meeting so that your credit may be applied. Due to Massachusetts regulations, insurance executives are not eligible for this credit. 


Registration is required for this event. 

Fees are as follows: Members and first-time guests of members, $35; Non-members, $60. 

Payment may be made online, at the door, or by check made out to the Essex County Estate Planning Council and mailed to:

Michelle Xiarhos Curran
Essex County Estate Planning Council
P.O. Box 1598
Newburyport, MA 01950

About Our Speaker

Katja Zigerlig is Vice President, Fine Arts, Wine and Jewelry Insurance for Private Client Group at AIG Insurance. In this role, she oversees the strategic growth of the “private collections” insurance portfolio for PCG. 

Ms. Zigerlig has two decades of professional experience in the art world. Prior to joining Private Client Group in 2004, she insured private collections, museums, galleries and exhibitions for AXA Art Insurance Company. She has also worked at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and interned at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.

Ms. Zigerlig has a B.A. and M.A. in art history, with a specialty in twentieth century art. She is a member of The Art Fund Association; the Contemporary Circle at MoMA PS1, The Friends of the Swiss Institute, and the Art Table. She has presented art history lectures at the College Art Association, British Association for Slavonic Studies and the Swiss Embassy in Washington D.C. She has also spoken about art and wine collecting in the context of alternative investments, asset protection, trust and estate planning and risk management to audiences of collectors, appraisers, financial and insurance professionals. Ms. Zigerlig has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Reuters, The Financial Times, The Globe and Mail, ARTnews and appeared on CNBC’s Power Lunch.

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