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Financial Planning > Tax Planning

On Bobo And The Estate Tax

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To The Editor:

When is it fair or right to double and triple tax the same dollar earned? Jack Bobo tells us that we should pay our taxes, both state and federal (on an increasing scale where the larger earner pays a greater percentage of each dollar). I assume Jack is also telling us to pay our FICA, and I assume he wants us to pay our sales tax on anything we buy. Now, Jack tells us that it is also fair that this same dollar should be taxed at our time of death.

Jack fails to tell his readers that the elimination of the estate tax has its price. A new “carryover” rule would begin that Jack ignores. With the ending of the estate tax, estates and others who acquire property from a decedent would usually then recognize the gain on transactions that would not have generated gain under the prior-law rules. Jack wants us to believe that the revenue stream to Uncle Sam will be impaired with the elimination of the estate tax. This carryover basis rule would, net, add to the treasury. Jack has told us that for our own good the estate tax must stay. Jack wants the very few who even now pay an estate tax to continue to be double taxed. When is it fair to tax the few twice on the same earned dollar?

Jack wants to lock in the estate tax insurance sale and this is self-interest, isnt it? Keeping the “family farm” in the family and not selling it is why the estate tax should be eliminated. Keeping the family home and not selling it is another reason to eliminate the estate tax. At the time of the sale of the house or the family farm the government will receive its tax. This is the fair and proper way to tax. Jacks way is to force liquidation, causing disruption to those we in this industry are supposed to protectthe family.

And, Jack tells us all of what he has written with a straight face!

Stanton W. Todd III
S.W. Todd and Associates
Northfield, Ill.

Reproduced from National Underwriter Edition, May 19, 2003. Copyright 2003 by The National Underwriter Company in the serial publication. All rights reserved. Copyright in this article as an independent work may be held by the author.


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