Congress once again is considering what to do with the estate
tax, that most insidious of taxes, which puts a levy on the
inevitable. Under current law, the "death" tax is 45 percent of
individual estates valued at more than $3.5 million; it is set to
expire altogether next year and, unchanged, would revert to 55
percent on estates valued at more than $1 million in 2011.
Confusing? You bet, and that's either part of the problem, part
of a larger scheme to obfuscate things or both.
The Obama administration has proposed an ongoing tax rate of 45
percent on estates exceeding an exemption level of $3.5 million per
person. Advocates argue, among other things, that 45 percent and
$3.5 million are still better than 55 percent and $1 million and
the tax would only apply to the "wealthy."
The U.S. Senate recently voted 51-48 to permanently cut the
estate tax rate to 35 percent with a $5 million per-person
exemption. Administration officials and some Senate Democrats
expressed their outrage; Senate majority leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.)
called the vote a...
Log in or register for FREE access to this article and other Professional Roofing online content.