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Estates and Trusts

Indiana Law Journal

Inheritance

2019

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Afterlife Of The Death Tax, Samuel D. Brunson Apr 2019

Afterlife Of The Death Tax, Samuel D. Brunson

Indiana Law Journal

More than a century ago, Congress enacted the modern estate tax to help pay for World War I. Unlike previous iterations of the estate tax, though, this one outlived the war and accumulated additional goals beyond merely raising revenue. The estate tax helped ensure the progressivity of the tax system as a whole, and it limited the hereditary ability to accumulate wealth.

This modern estate tax almost instantly met with opposition, though. The opposition has never been sufficient to entirely eliminate the estate tax, but it has severely weakened its ability to raise revenue and to prevent the accumulation of …