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2014 Federal Estate Tax, Gift Tax and Generation Skipping Transfer Tax Law Update

Posted on Tue Apr 29, 2014, on Estate Planning

Happily, 2014 continues to bring stability in the federal estate, gift and generation skipping taxes. For decades these taxes have been used as a political football, bouncing up and then down as politicians used the tax to drum up votes…and their campaign funds…rather than address the tax in a reasonable manner. Finally, things seem to have fallen into place and we can make long-term plans for our clients without guesswork. Of course things can always change, but the politicians have moved onto other issues, and the taxes now effect so few people, the political will to make change has dissipated.

Under the current rules, the federal estate tax exemption protects the vast majority of families from paying any federal estate tax. And, because the federal estate tax exemption is adjusted, over the years inflation will not grow estates so they are subject to the tax. For now, only the most wealthy families are subject to the estate tax and the number of federal estate tax returns Form 706 filed continues to shrink. From 2003 to 2102 the number fell 87%.

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Klenk Law is an exceptional practice. Their fine lawyers and staff team up to produce excellent results for their clients. They excel at explaining the often cryptic laws and policies that govern estate planning right down to the complexities of the various "trust" frameworks. Peter himself manages each client together with his great team, and he has a rare quality to be both a walking encyclopedia of planning minutia and also one of the most likable lawyers I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with. He is truly generous in intellect and in his personal approach to getting the "big picture" for complex family structures. I trust him implicitly to help me make the right choices for the future. In short, Klenk Law is a gem of a firm.

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