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Summary of Income, Business, and International Provisions in New Tax Bill

November 3, 2017

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Our colleagues in our Tax Advice and Controversy group have also summarized the proposed changes to individual, business, and international taxes in the new bill released on November 2 by the House Ways and Means Committee.

SUMMARY OF NEW TAX BILL PROPOSAL

November 3, 2017

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SUMMARY OF NEW TAX BILL PROPOSAL

November 3, 2017

Authored by: Charles Lin

House Republicans released their new tax bill on November 2, 2017.  As expected for such a significant proposal, the final bill, if passed, will likely look different.  Nonetheless, the bill, in its current form, provides the base starting point from which the House GOP intends to negotiate, both within their party and without.

The changes in the tax bill related to transfer taxes are as follows:

  • The transfer tax exemption for gift, estate, and GST purposes is doubled in 2018, from $5,000,000 per person to $10,000,000, as previously indexed for inflation – $11,200,000 per person – and indexed from there.
  • The estate and generation-skipping transfer tax will be fully repealed on January 1, 2024.
  • “Step-up” basis on death for income tax purposes of inherited property (presumably other than retirement plan benefits and other items of “income in respect of a decedent”) would remain in effect, even after 2023,

Treasury to Withdraw Proposed IRC §2704 Regulations

Treasury to Withdraw Proposed IRC §2704 Regulations

October 26, 2017

Authored by: Andrew Bleyer and Larry Brody

The Department of the Treasury has withdrawn the controversial proposed regulations for Section 2704 of the Code.  Section 2704 limits valuation discounts in family-controlled entities for certain lapsing rights and restrictions.  The proposed Regulations would have expanded the scope of Section 2704 by adding a new classification of disregarded restrictions and by narrowing several longstanding exceptions.  Comments submitted after the regulations were proposed complained that the requirements were unclear and that the impact on state law was difficult to predict.  On October 2, 2017, the Department of the Treasury submitted a report recommending that the proposed 2704 Regulations be rescinded and today the proposed Regulations were officially withdrawn by notice published in the Federal Register (82 FR 48779).

IRS Gives Relief to Victims of Hurricane Harvey

September 1, 2017

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Due to the devastation and upheaval caused by Hurricane Harvey, the Internal Revenue Service is providing extra time for certain individuals and businesses to file their returns and pay taxes.  Among the relief provided is a new January 31, 2018 filing deadline for individual taxpayers who have valid extensions until October 16 and businesses which have extensions until September 15.  According to IR-2017-135:

“The IRS is now offering this expanded relief to any area designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), as qualifying for individual assistance. Currently, 18 counties are eligible, but taxpayers in localities added later to the disaster area will automatically receive the same filing and payment relief.”

The IRS has set up a landing page to assist victims of Hurricane Harvey.

Update: The IRS has extended similar relief to victims of Hurricane Irma.  

IRS Grants Taxpayers Two-Year Window to File Portability Election

In a long-awaited move, the IRS announced recently that taxpayers will now have at least two years to file an estate tax return to elect portability of a decedent’s unused estate tax exemption to the decedent’s surviving spouse.

The new rule was articulated by the IRS in Revenue Procedure 2017-34 and became effective as of June 9, 2017.  Under this new two year filing window, which the IRS characterizes as a “simplified method for certain taxpayers to obtain an extension of time  . . . to make a ‘portability’ election”, a decedent’s estate will have until the later of January 2, 2018 or the second anniversary of the decedent’s death to file an estate tax return to elect portability.  In order to take advantage of this simplified method for obtaining an extension of

More on Transfer Tax Issues Post Windsor and the Legalization of Same-Sex Marriage

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In a recent Notice, the Internal Revenue Service set forth some administrative procedures helping taxpayers recalculate gift and generation-skipping transfer tax exemption with respect to gifts and bequests made to or for the benefit of a same-sex spouse, or descendants of same-sex spouses before the Supreme Court Case United States v. Windsor was decided, even though the statute of limitation for claiming such exemption had expired.

Prior to the Windsor decision, the U.S. government (and by extension, the Internal Revenue Service) did not recognize marriages of same-sex couples. In the Windsor case, the estate of a decedent sought to claim the estate tax marital deduction for bequests to the decedent’s same-sex spouse (the couple was legally married in Canada and their marriage was recognized by their home state of New York prior to

Planning and the Death of the Death Tax

Planning and the Death of the Death Tax

May 1, 2017

Authored by: Andrew Bleyer and Larry Brody

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On Wednesday afternoon the White House again proposed eliminating the so-called death tax as part of its tax reform plan, but the details remain sparse.  When pressed for specifics Director Cohn simply stated that with the implementation of the administration’s tax plan, the death tax would disappear.

The phrase “death tax” entered the popular lexicon by way of tax reformers wanting to summarize and caricature the several parts of the Federal transfer tax system.

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