While income tax rates and spending issues received all the attention, the estate tax was also a big pasrt of the last minute "fiscal cliff" negotiations!  In 2012, the exemption amount as $5.12 million and the rate 35%.  If Congress did not act, the exemption would fall back to $1 million and the rate rise to 55%!! 

Fortunately, at this this time, Congress did something right!  Deborah Jacobs of Forbes.com explains:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/deborahljacobs/2013/01/02/after-the-fiscal-cliff-deal-estate-and-gift-tax-explained/

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