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Recent Changes in State Transfer Taxes

July 29, 2014

According to a list published by Forbes magazine in 2013, Maryland was among the worst states for retirement for several reasons. One such reason is its estate tax and, according to Maryland’s comptroller, is at least partially to blame for an outflow of its retirees to other states. So, trying to change its image and curb the outflow, Maryland recently increased its estate tax exemption (effective 1-1-2015) so that it gradually increases over a 5-year period at which point it should match the federal estate tax exemption amount. Also, earlier this year, New York increased its estate tax exemption amount from $1,000,000 to $2,062,500 (effective 4-1-2014). Additionally, in 2013, Minnesota enacted a gift tax (only to have it repealed earlier this year by Governor Mark Dayton), and tweaked its estate tax in several ways (including increasing its exemption amount). Clearly, this is an ever changing landscape which requires both constant monitoring, and appropriate consideration to be given when crafting estate plans.

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