Alternate valuation date – Flexible postmortem planning a plus when markets are volatile
Abstract: Many people may assume that filing a federal estate tax return is pretty cut-and-dried. The executor or professional representative completes the return, pays the requisite amount of tax, if any, and that’s the end of the matter. However, a savvy move by an executor might save a wealthy family hundreds of thousands of estate tax dollars by making a timely election to use the “alternate valuation date” for assets. This article explains the qualifications to make the election and offers a fictional example of how the election can work in beneficiaries’ favor.