As part of his 2014-2015 budget, Governor Cuomo has proposed significant changes to the New York estate and gift tax law. First, over four years, from April 2014 through December 2019, the New York estate tax exemption will increase from $1,000,000 to $5,250,000. After December 2019, the estate tax exemption will be indexed for inflation. Planning will still be important, because a surviving spouse will not be able to use a decedent’s unused New York exemption. This is the opposite of the federal rule, which does allow a surviving spouse to use a decedent’s unused federal estate tax exemption. Also, the New York exemption will always be less than the federal exemption. The top rate of estate tax will be reduced from 16% to 10%.
Mr. Hendel has been practicing wealth preservation planning for over thirty years.