Personal Finance


ABDULQADER AL-ANI | AFP | Getty Images

A guest wearing a hat arrives at the Meydan Racecourse to attend the Dubai World Cup day horse racing event.

Well-to-do households are likely to keep their millions in the family for a long, long, time, courtesy of the GOP’s proposed tax bills.

Bills from both House and Senate Republicans call for an immediate increase in the amount of assets you can pass on without being subject to the federal estate tax. And because of how the bills were written, inheritors can escape most, if not all taxes.

Currently, an individual can transfer up to $5.49 million in assets free of estate taxes. Amounts over that are subject to a top levy of 40 percent.

Some 11,310 estate tax returns are expected to be filed in 2017, and about half of them will be subject to the tax, according to estimates from the Tax Policy Center.

The Senate bill permits individuals who die in 2018 to leave up to $10 million in assets, effectively doubling the amount the wealthy can transfer.

The House bill goes a step further, also doubling the amount that can be transferred tax-free and ultimately ending the estate tax altogether. Under the House version, the estate tax will disappear on Dec. 31, 2024.

Watch: White House economic advisor Gary Cohn says estate tax helps a “lot of different people”



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