IRS Portability Rules Simplify Process, but Don't Satisfy Practitioners

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Long-awaited proposed portability rules by IRS (REG-141832-11, T.D. 9593) for estates to claim the unused estate and gift tax exclusion amounts of their deceased spouses fall short of practitioners' hopes for an abbreviated form for smaller estates, but are still a stab in the right direction in terms of simplicity, practitioners tell BNA. “Everybody's disappointed that the IRS has not come up with a four line return,” Ron Aucutt, McGuireWoods estate tax attorney in McLean, Va., says. Practitioners had hoped IRS would create a so-called Form 706-EZ (United States Estate (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return) for estates under $5 million, but instead IRS merely simplifies the process by allowing executors of estates that are not otherwise required to file an estate tax return to avoid reporting the value of property that qualifies for the marital or charitable deduction.

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