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Abstract

For those who elect special use valuation for farmland at death for federal estate tax purposes,1 one of the major concerns is the possibility of recapture in the after-death period.2 Four almost identical letter rulings, issued in 2011, have provided further guidance on the relevant authority governing post-death recapture.3 Unfortunately, the rulings cite approvingly to two Court of Appeals decisions,4 both of which have been roundly criticized as improperly approving post-death cash rent leasing at the time of those cases.5 To complicate matters further, an amendment in 1997, retroactive to December 31, 1976, expanded the opportunity to receive cash rentals on special use valued land after death.6 That aspect is not mentioned in the 2011 rulings.7

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