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March 26, 2006

Median Estate: $29,000

That's it. The majority of Americans receive no more than $29,000 in inheritances, according to the Federal Reserve.

Yet $200 billion annually are being passed on each year in inheritances.

Put those two numbers together and it's clear that the debate on the estate tax is absolutely irrelevant for most families. And one of the reasons is that the main "tax" on middle income estates come before death, in the form of massive health-related expenses that eat away at the nest egg:

RAND calculated that the average person between 60 and 70 would spend 58 percent of his or her wealth before dying.
So maybe progressives should be doing something to fight against the 58% medical care estate tax as an alternative to the GOP campaign over the largely irrelevant "death tax"?

Might be a winner.

Posted by Nathan at March 26, 2006 07:04 AM