Thomson Reuters today announced the release of a special report, Estate Planning Portability is a Game-Change for Married Couples, to guide estate planners on the application of the portability provision, which allows a surviving spouse to inherit the deceased spouse’s residual gift and estate tax applicable exclusion amount.
Portability offers a significant change in estate planning for married couples and may be one of planners’ most effective tools for small and medium-sized estates. Congress introduced this taxpayer-friendly provision to simplify estate planning, and the recently released final regulations clarify the portability election rules. However, while this opportunity is incredibly useful, it is not automatic.
This report provides an in-depth analysis of the portability provision and features multiple examples which illustrate how portability applies in different scenarios. It also offers guidance on when professionals should consider portability to maximize a married couple’s estate exclusion amounts, or when a bypass trust or other tax planning methods may be preferable. The report also provides information on how and when to compute and report the use of the transferred exclusion amounts.
“Portability is a powerful and sometimes overlooked estate planning tool that can simplify the estate planning process and save estate taxes for many couples,” said Karen Horne, executive editor with the Tax & Accounting business of Thomson Reuters. “Planners should be aware of the impact portability offers when used as a post-death planning tool or incorporated into an existing estate plan.”