Estate Tax Repeal Bill Introduced

AGC backs effort to repeal the “Death Tax,” impacting many small, family-owned construction companies.

On January 18, Congressmen Randy Feenstra (R-Iowa) and Sanford Bishop (D-Ga.) introduced bipartisan legislation to repeal the estate tax, the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2024.

Currently the estate tax kicks in for estates/family-owned businesses valued above $13,610,000 (individuals), and $27,220,000 (couples) at a rate of 40 percent. In the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the exemption level was doubled, but only temporarily through 2025. Absent action by Congress, the exemption level in 2025 will fall to approximately $6.8 million for individuals, and $13.6 million for couples. The Death Tax Repeal Act would permanently repeal the legislation, so that it doesn’t affect any family-owned construction firms again. As AGC Chief Executive Officer Steve Sandherr said:

“For many family-owned construction firms, the estate tax is like a Sword of Damocles hanging over the head of the owners. Should the worst happen and the owner of family-owned construction firm dies unexpectedly, the consequences for the business and local community can be catastrophic, causing lost jobs, investment, or worse. Passing the Death Tax Repeal Act and permanently getting rid of the estate tax is long overdue, and AGC strongly supports Rep. Feenstra’s legislation.”

While it is unlikely that this legislation will pass this Congress—President Biden and key Senate Democrats have proposed increasing the federal estate tax—with 162 co-sponsors, it is an important statement of how the estate tax remains an unpopular and destructive tax.

If you have any questions, please contact Matthew Turkstra at [email protected], or (202) 547-4733.


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