Saturday, January 05, 2013
Law - "The End of a Decade of Uncertainty Over Gift and Estate Taxes"
That is the headline to this long "Wealth Matters" NY Times column today by Paul Sullivan. It begins:
FOR many of the wealthy, the American Taxpayer Relief Act, passed this week by Congress, is aptly named.
For estate and gift taxes in particular, all but the richest of the rich will probably be able to protect their holdings from taxes, now that Congress has permanently set the estate and gift tax exemptions at $5 million (a level that will rise with inflation).
“You could say this eliminates the estate tax for 99 percent of the population, though I’ve seen figures that say 99.7 or 99.8,” said Richard A. Behrendt, director of estate planning at the financial services firm Baird and a former inspector for the Internal Revenue Service. “From a policy point of view, the estate tax is not there for raising revenue. It’s there for a check on the massive concentration of wealth in a few hands, and it will still accomplish that.”