Recent reports indicate that, if one of your clients were to die this year, the first $3.5 million of their estate is exempt from tax. Yet the estate tax is currently slated to disappear in 2010 and in 2011 the exemption will be only $1 million of each estate.
In response to this issue, President Barack Obama says he will strive for the estate tax to stay at $3.5 million next year.
Meanwhile, findings indicate that only one in 300 Americans who die next year will leave a federally taxable estate. This figure is juxtaposed with a figure of one in 43 in 1999, when the estate tax exemption was only $650,000, according to the Urban Institute-Brookings Tax Policy Center.
And, it is reported that those Americans with more than $3 point 5 million can now reduce their federal taxes by gifting to their heirs.
We have little time before the tax exemption is cleared for a year. What do you think should be done about the estate tax? What would be the most swift course for Obama and Congress?