Financial Cliff Crisis Avoided? Estate Taxes in 2013

In Estate Planning by Taylor Stevens

In 2012, with the dreaded “Financial Cliff” looming, many were stressed over the inactiveness that would cause the estate tax exemption level to fall to $1 million. In the first 2 days of the new year, Congress finally passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) which makes long-term the $5 million exemption as well as portability.

Exemption Stays at $5 Million
As previously stated, the estate tax exemption was expected to fall to $5 million to $1 million per individual on January 1, 2013. However, ATRA extends 2012’s exemption of $5 million, adjusted for inflation. While the Internal Revenue Service has not shown the specific computation, the majority of anticipate that it will be calculated at a $5.25 million exemption per person (or a $10.5 million exemption per home).

Exemption Is Still Portable
ATRA kept portability of the exemption in between spouses. Mobility means that when one spouse passes, the surviving partner can use the deceased partner’s estate tax exemption. However, a bypass trust is still an incredibly beneficial tool for people to consider, even if you do not think that you would exceed the exemption at this time. In addition, do not forget that you should elect portability– the IRS is not going to merely offer you a $5 million exemption.

The Compromise– The Tax Rates Will Rise
While the $5 million exemption omits numerous more estates from paying estate tax than the projected $1 million exemption would, those that do have an estate above $5 million will be taxed at a higher rate. In 2012, any quantity in the estate above $5,120,000 (the $5 million exemption changed for inflation) would be taxed at 35%. ATRA increases the quantity to a 40% tax rate. This rate is a compromise between the 45% rate that President Obama sought and the 35% tax rate that was in result for several years 2011 and 2012.

ATRA made these estate tax arrangements irreversible. However, as whatever with Congress, this can simply be changed by another bill.

IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: Internal Revenue Service guidelines usually provide that, for the purpose of preventing federal tax charges, a taxpayer might rely only on official written recommendations conference particular requirements. The tax advice in this file does not satisfy those requirements. Accordingly, the tax suggestions was not meant or written to be utilized, and it can not be utilized, for the function of preventing federal tax charges which may be imposed.
IRC Sections 6662 Disclosure: The Internal Revenue Code enforces significant “accuracy-related” penalties on taxpayers for positions taken on a tax return that lead to a substantial understatement of liability for tax. Taxpayers might prevent such charges by adequately revealing positions that are not based upon “significant authority” in accordance with the approaches described under Treasury Regulations section 1.6662-4(f).