Proposed Changes to Estate & Gift Tax Law

Talk of Estate & Gift Tax increases has persisted throughout the year. Now, faced with the task of raising revenue to pay for the proposed infrastructure bill, the House Ways and Means Committee has proposed several significant modifications to existing Estate & Gift Tax law, including the following:

  • Beginning 1/1/22, reduction of the amount each person can give away – either during one’s life or at one’s death — Estate & Gift Tax free, from $11.7 million to roughly $6 million;
  • Beginning on the date of the enactment of new legislation (which can be any time before the end of the year), subjecting assets in so-called “Grantor Trusts” to Estate & Gift Taxation, thereby eliminating many common and powerful Estate Tax reduction techniques;
  • Beginning on the date of enactment of the new legislation, elimination of valuation discounts for Estate & Gift Tax purposes for all “non-business” assets, which in some instances may include real estate.

Estate & Gift Tax Law Modification Proposal

The proposals, if passed into law, have the potential to substantially increase Estate & Gift Tax exposure for many people. Therefore, immediate action is required for the following:

  • Take full advantage of the $11.7 Estate & Gift Tax Exclusion before of the end of the year;
  • Implement strategies involving Grantor Trusts prior to the date of enactment;
  • Take advantage of valuation discounts on non-business assets prior to the date of enactment.

Whether the proposals as described above will become law is uncertain. However, for some clients, waiting until legislation is passed may come at a significant cost. Contact a member of the Estate, Trust & Tax Group at Norris McLaughlin, P.A., as soon as possible to discuss how the proposals could affect your situation and determine whether immediate action is warranted.

Note:  The contents of this letter are for informational purposes only and are not intended to constitute legal advice or form an attorney-client relationship. For information and advice particular to your situation, please contact one of the following attorneys in our Trust, Estate Practice Group:  James J. Costello, Jr.Judith A. Harris, Jill Lebowitz. Copyright © 2021 Norris McLaughlin, P.A.