The Boss and the Estate Tax

One odd angle surrounding George Steinbrenner’s death is that there is currently no federal estate tax. The estate tax lapsed at the end of 2009 and Congress is deadlocked about how or whether to bring it back. The initial thought was that any restoration would be made retroactive to January 1, 2010, but that might not happen now.  As a result, Steinbrenner’s heirs may reap a huge windfall.

If Congress brings back the estate tax with a prospective resumption date (for example, on October 1, 2010), that would create a rather odd . . . er . . . incentive for the heirs of the elderly.  Let’s hope that mistake doesn’t happen.

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4 Responses

  1. Ken Rhodes says:

    I’m confused — maybe — or maybe it’s just terminology.

    “If Congress brings back the estate tax with a prospective resumption date (for example, on January 1, 2011), etc…”

    I think if Congress takes NO action on that subject, the estate tax DOES come back, precisely on January 1, 2011, due to the sunset provision of the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001.

    Am I behind the times on this subject?

  2. Gerard Magliocca says:

    Ah, yes. My mistake. I will change that example.

  3. tf says:

    “As a result, Steinbrenner’s heirs may reap a huge windfall.”

    I do not see how keeping what is rightfully yours and will be taxed when recognized as a windfall.

    Unless you mean in the sense that the robber barons chose not to steal their money.

    I am not rich but I do not see maximum tax rate of 55% or whatever it will revert to next year as anything but legalized robbery. Paying normal capital gains when realized is fine but this is way more than that.

  4. dfb says:

    “I do not see how keeping what is rightfully yours and will be taxed when recognized as a windfall.”

    Because it is not yours, yet. 😉