Estate Tax Rates to Change in 2015

For many years, the federal estate tax was one of the biggest concerns for wealthy individuals who wished to leave their estate to their heirs. However, that’s all about to change, as it was just announced that the estate tax exemption amount will rise to $5.43 million per individual this year. Now, married couples can get the benefit of two individual exemptions, making the total exemption per couple nearly $11 million.

With this new tax law in place, it is expected that only about 3,700 estates—or 0.12% of the total—will owe federal estate taxes this year.

The highest estate tax rate on those estates above the exemption amount is 40%.

The IRS also announced that the annual gift exclusion limit—or the amount an individual can give to another person who isn’t a spouse, tax free—will remain at $14,000 per recipient. There is no limit to the amount of gifts a person can give, so long as each is given to a different individual.

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