Farmers hold a special place in our society, because they still work the land to provide food, for their own families and for all Americans. The Estate Tax has been one of the farmer’s greatest enemies.
Farms often operate with the help of several generations, working side by side each day, along with other people who’s job depends on the farm. Those jobs and families are most at risk when the majority owner passes away, thrusting the farm into the world of estate tax appraisals and executors. In most cases, there is no way to maintain 35%, 45% let along 55% (the current law in 2012) of the value of a farm in cash to pay the IRS upon the death of an owner. Yet the IRS expects to be paid, within 9 months of the death. If an extension is granted, a tax lien will go against the business or property crippling a farmer’s chances to maintain lines of credit that might be needed. The farmer has no choice: they must sell off a portion of the very asset that earns them a living in order to pay the estate tax. ASSET wants to change that.
ASSET and our members are working on a legislative proposal to change the collection method of the estate tax that would virtually eliminate the tax for 99.7% of taxpayers. That’s good news to farmers. ASSET is proud to help Farmers have a clear voice in the estate tax debate, just like this farmer from Maryland farmer Windridge Farm Letter to Senate.