Wednesday, May 25, 2011
S. Alan Medlin (David W. Robinson Professor of Law, the University of South Carolina School of Law), F. Ladson Boyle (Charles E. Simons, Jr. Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Federal Law, the University of South Carolina School of Law), and Howard M. Zaritsky (Estate Planning Attorney, Rapidan, Virginia) recently published their article entitled 2010: It Was a Very Good Year. . . To Die—Or Was It?, 45 Real Prop. Tr. & Est. L. J. 589 (Winter 2011). The editors’ synopsis available in the Winter 2010 Real Property Trust and Estate Journal is below:
On December 17, 2010, Congress reinstated the estate tax and the generation skipping transfer tax, with changes from the prior tax regime. Estates of decedents dying in 2010, before the reinstatement of those transfer taxes, have a choice: apply the new tax regime or elect out. This Article discusses some of the tax factors affecting this choice. In addition to the tax issues for these decedents, the lack of any estate or generation skipping tax at the time of their deaths could cause document construction problems that impact the allocation of their estates among beneficiaries. This Article examines the construction problems and proposes disclaimers and family settlement agreements as possible solutions in certain cases.