California Estate Planning Blog by Kevin Staker

June 24, 2010

Three Liberal Senators Proposing Extra 10 Percent Estate Tax on Billionaires (technically half)

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kevin Staker @ 3:24 pm
Tags: ,

Senators Bernard Sanders, Tom Harkin, and Sheldon Whitehouse, three of the most liberal. Have proposed top estate tax rate of 65 percent on estates over $500 million. They argue these people “should be paying their fair share”. They do not say why that is their fair share.

I believe no chance of passing. Almost did not even bother posting this news. But not much else going on.



  1. Thank you for your comments. Those of us in estate limbo this year have no idea what to expect. I am trying to make decisions about an estate created in Jan 2010. I am interested as to why you think that there is little chance of this bill passing? I say this because I agree with you. This appears to me to be political coddling with elections coming. These senators do not want their liberal constituents to think they are not doing anything about the estate tax. I have a hard time believing that even they believe it will pass into law. Everyone knows that billion dollar fortunes will fight any retroactive tax this year. Raising the tax in such individuals only gives their lawyers that much firepower in an inevitable challenge in the courts. This bill makes no sense to me.

    Comment by Dixon — June 24, 2010 @ 5:09 pm | Reply

    • The Senate is having a hard enough time trying to agree on anything regarding the estate tax. Hence, little chance of them (meaning at least 60) agreeing to an even higher top estate tax rate.

      Comment by kevinstaker — June 24, 2010 @ 5:17 pm | Reply

  2. I recently read on the BNA site that Baucus maybe backing away from a retroactive tax. Sander Levin talked about giving people the option to comply with existing law this year or whatever is passed in March. Kyle recently stated that he was not aware of anyone pressing for a retroactive tax. We can only guess what Reid and Baucus are thinking, but at least Kyle does not believe they are pushing for a retroactive tax. The main debate seemed to focus on the exemption levels. This bill is truely out of left field. I wonder what Baucus and Levin will think of it. These liberal dems may be hoping people will be angry enough about a tax free billion dollar fortune that they will be able to get this through, but they have not thought about prior statements from top democrats and potential lawsuits, in my opinion.

    Comment by Dixon — June 24, 2010 @ 5:31 pm | Reply

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