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Abstract

The controversy has been raging for months – is it wise for an individual with a $5 million estate (or larger) to make a major gift before the end of 2012?1 As with many tax issues, it comes down to the governing objectives of the taxpayer. There is no one right answer to the question of whether gifts should be made before the $5,120,000 applicable credit amount/applicable exclusion amount for 2012 (shared by federal gift tax, federal estate tax and generation-skipping transfer tax) is scheduled to “sunset” back to 2001 at a level of $1,000,000 after December 31, 2012.2

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