When the House Ways and Means Committee produced its components of the Build Back Better Act, it omitted a proposal to tax unrealized capital gains at the time of a person’s death. A recent study from global tax, accounting and advisory firm EY may help explain why. The analysis, examining five major tax proposals that were under discussion, found that taxing these gains at death, paired with an increase in the capital gains rate, provided little in terms of benefits. It would do significant economic harm, while generating relatively little revenue to offset all that pain. As the report, produced for the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council, lays out, this policy is “the most economically harmful in terms of their adverse impact on GDP per dollar of revenue either over the 10- year budget window or in the long run.”
As Washington continues to debate what will be in a $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill, the issue of taxing unrealized gains on inheritances led dozens of organizations from across the country representing farmers, ranchers, and agribusinesses to send a letter to the Chairmen and Ranking Members of the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committees outlining their concerns. The Tax Aggie Coalition, made up of 41 national and regional agricultural groups, sent the letter yesterday.
Former Democratic Senator Heidi Heitkamp, one of the party’s leading voices on tax policy, said President Joe Biden’s proposal to tax appreciated assets upon death would hurt family farms and family- owned businesses.
“I’m trying to sound the alarm, both economically and politically, for Democrats that this is not a path to walk,” she said in an interview on “Squawk Box.” “The disruption that it would create for small family business and farmers and family assets is not worth the pain.”
U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) today announced the launch of the Saving America’s Family Enterprises (SAFE), a non-profit educational organization advocating against the imposition of new transfer taxes such as the Sensible Taxation and Equity Promotion (STEP) Act, which would tax the gifting of homes, small businesses, family farms and other assets to family members upon the death of a loved one. As part of the launch, SAFE is announcing an initial six-figure paid media campaign to educate persuadable voters, as well as new polling data demonstrating the broad, bipartisan opposition to new transfer taxes such as the STEP Act. The data released today shows that 85 percent of all voters agree that the double death tax would affect hardworking middle-class families the most.
See the full results of SAFE’s nationwide survey of 1200 voters, exploring public opinion of new transfer taxes like the STEP Act.
Learn about top takeaways from SAFE’s August 2021 Tax Survey, demonstrating clear public opposition to new transfer taxes like the STEP Act.