Discussions on Tightening Estate Tax Rules

Randall Weiseman Alabama, Cattle, Citrus, Field Crops, Florida, Forestry, General, Georgia, Livestock, Nursery Crops, Specialty Crops

afbf-logoThe Obama Administration is racing to finalize as many new rules and regulations as it can before January 20th. But one of those that could hang over into the new administration would tighten estate tax rules. The American Farm Bureau Federation, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, and other farm groups argue the Internal Revenue Service proposal would end or reduce discounts that hold down the value of farm assets and thereby reduce estate tax liability. AFB tax adviser Pat Wolff says an example is when a farm owner divides up their farm into thirds and then passes those pieces onto their children.

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But Wolff says the IRS acknowledges that, with some 10,000 comments filed, it won’t be able to finalize the rule before the Trump administration takes over.

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And what about the AFB’s longtime goal of ending the estate tax altogether? Wolff sees better odds after January 20th.

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But Wolff cautions it won’t be a slam dunk since someone could try to take out or change estate tax repeal. And she warns there may also be an attempt to end so-called “stepped-up basis” that limits capital gains tax to the gain between the time of death, not original purchase, and the time of the sale.

(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters News Service)