The Fisher Law Office, a wealth planning and business development law firm in Annapolis, MD, continues to monitor potential changes in legislation that may affect the federal estate tax. We have recently seen that the congressional newspaper, “The Hill”, is reporting negotiations seem to be moving between the Democrats in power and the small business lobby, the National Federation of Independent Business.
The story follows below:
Small-business lobby repositions on estate tax, now ready to deal
Democratic control of Congress has prompted the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) to change its tune on estate tax repeal and support a less ambitious approach.
The powerful lobby for small businesses has accepted that it can’t win an outright repeal of the tax in this political climate. So it has backed bipartisan legislation that would create a 35 percent tax on estates worth more than $5 million.
“We still believe that full repeal is where we need to go. Just looking at the current environment — the way Congress is set up — we don’t think it is immediately possible,” Chris Walters, manager of legislative affairs at the NFIB, told The Hill.
The NFIB is co-director of the 40-member-plus Family Business Estate Tax Coalition, which last week sent a letter to Congress urging passage of the legislation Sens. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) offered in 2009 during the budget debate.
Ten Democratic senators backed the measure, but it failed to garner enough support to be added to the budget. In addition to Lincoln, Democratic Sens. Max Baucus (Mont.), Jon Tester (Mont.), Maria Cantwell (Wash.), Patty Murray (Wash.), Ben Nelson (Neb.), Bill Nelson (Fla.), Mark Pryor (Ark.), Mary Landrieu (La.), and Evan Bayh (Ind.) supported the proposal last year.
“We believe we can still get those 10 Democrats,” Walters said. “And we’re going to push … to get the best deal possible.”