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NMPF Praises House Vote to Repeal the Estate Tax but Bill’s Future is Questionable

May 11, 2015

NMPF praised a mid-April House of Representatives vote to repeal the estate tax as a step toward protecting farms’ financial viability for future generations. But the future of the repeal legislation looks murky at best. Long a priority of agriculture and congressional Republicans, the repeal bill was approved on a largely party-line vote April 16.

“It’s hard enough for new generations of dairy producers to establish their own farms without the prospect of the estate tax penalizing the transfer of farms between generations,” said NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern in a statement. “That’s why we support the action in the House of Representatives to repeal the estate tax.”

“When younger farmers inherit farms, they are often asset rich and cash poor,” Mulhern added. “The estate tax can hit them with a bill to the IRS that is prohibitively costly. This legislation helps address that problem, and will facilitate the ability of established farmers to transfer their businesses to their offspring.”

The bill repeals the estate and generation-skipping transfer taxes and makes permanent the maximum 35 percent gift tax rate and lifetime gift tax exemption. It also provides for an inflation adjustment to the exemption amount.

House consideration of the measure, H.R. 1105, known as the Death Tax Repeal Act, was timed to coincide with the April 15 tax filing deadline.