WASHINGTON, DC - A bipartisan group of lawmakers joined Congressmen Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Mike Ross (D-Ark) in reintroducing legislation to permanently repeal the estate, or death tax, including Representatives Kristi Noem (R-SD), Dan Boren (D-OK), and Devin Nunes (R-CA).
Family owned small businesses, farms and ranches are the most vulnerable targets of this double tax because the law doesn't differentiate between people and their businesses. When the full value of a business' assets, such as equipment and property, are included in someone's estate, many are forced to sell needed assets just to write a check to the Internal Revenue Service.
Can you imagine working your whole life to build up a nest egg or family business - only to see Uncle Sam swoop in to take more than half of it upon your death? asked Brady. The Death Tax is still the #1 reason family farms and businesses in America aren't passed down to the next generation. It's the wrong tax at the wrong time and hurts the wrong people.
"We pay taxes all our lives, so it just doesn't make sense to be taxed again when we die," said Ross. "I've heard from farmers and small business owners all over Arkansas who are concerned that when they die, their loved ones won't be able to afford the estate taxes in order to keep the family farm or business in their family. The death tax is unfair and punishes those Americans who work hard all their lives so they can pass their family business down to the next generation when they die. I have long supported the repeal of the death tax and I'm proud to join this bipartisan effort to finally and fully repeal the death tax once and for all."
"The death tax is unfair and hurts family farms, ranches and small businesses at the worst possible time," said Noem. "When my own dad died, our family was forced to make the choice to either sell land or take out a loan to pay the tax. We took out the loan, but that lesson taught me a lot about the reach of government. Death simply should not be a taxable event."
It is an honor to join my colleagues on this bipartisan legislation to permanently repeal the estate tax," said Boren. "Estate taxes are especially harmful to farmers, ranchers, and other small businesses because these operations tend to be capital-intensive with a high concentration of assets tied up in land, buildings, and equipment. I look forward to working on this important legislation to bury the death tax for good.
The estate tax is one of the worst forms of double taxation in the United States," said Nunes. "Money that has already been taxed when a person is alive is taxed yet again at death. There is no reason why American families should have to answer a knock on the door by the IRS during a time of sorrow. The death tax needs to be repealed.
Small business associations, farm, ranch and seniors groups support ending this outdated, unfair and onerous tax that the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed is one of the leading causes of the breakup of multigenerational farms and ranches.
Estate taxes continue to be a problem for our nation's farm and ranch families who are crippled when the tax exceeds their operations' cash and liquid assets, said American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman, a rice and cattle producer from Columbus, Texas. Permanent estate tax legislation is needed to relieve farmers and ranchers from the financial drain of estate tax planning and prevent the damage caused to farms and ranches when a family member dies.
For four generations and more than 100 years, my family has raised cattle on the same land in Montana. Like farmers and ranchers across this country, it is my hope to pass our family's land on to my kids and grandkids," said National Cattlemen's Beef Association President Bill Donald. "But the one thing that could stop that from happening is the death tax. Cattlemen across the country join me in thanking Congressman Brady for introducing this commonsense legislation and we will work with him to ensure it becomes the law of the land.
Repeal of the Federal Estate Tax has long been a goal of the Texas Farm Bureau, said Texas Farm Bureau President Kenneth Dierschke. We applaud the efforts of Congressman Brady. The Death Tax is a double dip tax, taking a significant portion out of a person's estate when he or she dies despite the fact that those assets have already been taxed.
"It's immoral that seniors should spend their golden years worrying about Uncle Sam -- who is not a blood relative -- being the first claimant in line," said James L. Martin, Chairman of the 60 Plus Association. "It's time to bury the death tax and stop forcing grieving families to sell off what has already been taxed."