The House has passed estate-tax legislation supported by the National Automobile Dealers Association. Expected to take into effect for 2011 and 2012, this estate-tax provision imposes a maximum 35% rate on inheritances of more than $5 million for individuals and $10 million for couples.
This provision is included in a broad tax-cut package that has been sent to President Obama for his signature.
In fact, Obama and congressional Republicans have already reached an agreement on this matter. Earlier this month, it was submitted to Congress and it was then passed by the Senate.
The estate-tax portion received plenty of criticism since it was deemed too partial to the wealthy by several House Democrats who had worked unsuccessfully to have the maximum rate increased to 45% on estates of over $3.5 million for individuals and $7 million for couples.
That was the 2009 rate. There was no estate tax in effect this year, but if Congress hadn't acted, the rate was due to increase Jan. 1 to 55% on estates of over $1 million per individual and $2 million per couple. [via autonews - sub. required]