Published on: December 17, 2008Published reports say that President-elect Barack Obama has proposed freezing the estate tax – popularly known as the “death tax” – at 2009 levels, a move that would neither eliminate it completely nor return it to 2001 levels, at which point it began what was to be a decade-long phase out on the way to complete eradication.
In 2001, the maximum estate tax was 55 percent on estates valued above $675,000. The 2009 rate, which would be locked in by the Obama administration, would be 45 percent on per-spouse inheritances of $3.5 million or more.
According to various stories, the proposal is likely to find critics at both ends of the political spectrum – conservatives who want to see the death tax eliminated completely, and progressives who believe in what they call “fair tax policies” for lower class and middle class families.
- KC's View:
- I’ve never understood the double taxation concept behind the estate tax, but I suppose this is what they call governing from the middle. It’s also a tough time to be eliminating revenue streams completely…especially since the taxpayers are footing the bill for banks, brokerages, car companies, etc…