If there are two constants in life, they are death and taxes. Even in death, there is an estate tax that may apply to things you leave behind. After all, as the old adage goes, you can’t take it with you. While this may be true, why would you want to leave money for Uncle Sam?
Indeed, the estate tax has had its share of controversy over the past few years. And while it celebrated its 100th anniversary this year, it has historically been an unpopular tax. With so much disdain for this tax, why is it still around?
Consider this; the federal estate tax only affects those valued at $3.5 million or more. To put this in perspective, only a few of every 1000 estates may be subject to the tax. Additionally, there are a number of methods to either reduce the value of a large estate, or to structure it in a way that allows the owner to pass it to others outside of probate court.
Because of this, those with considerable interests should not only look at estate planning as a way to reduce taxes, they should also ensure that their business interests are not compromised. In essence an effective estate plan will provide direction for how one’s personal effects will be distributed and extend important details about how the business will be managed.
If you have questions about how your estate may be affected by estate taxes, or need additional information about protecting your legacy against intrusive taxes, an experienced tax attorney can help.