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House Committee Approves Bill Ending Inheritance Tax For Many Small Businesses

January 22, 2013

The state House Finance Committee on Tuesday approved a measure that would allow small business owners in Pennsylvania to transfer ownership of their businesses without having to pay the state’s inheritance tax.

New state Representative Lee James, from Oil City, who is a member of the committee, said the bill would “reform our tax system and protect Pennsylvania jobs.”

In order to qualify for the exemption, the family business would be required for a period of at least five years to continue its original operations and be owned by the same family members who inherited it.

Among the supporters of the legislation is the Pennsylvania branch of the National Federation of Independent Business, whose executive director, Kevin Shivers called the inheritance tax a “death blow.”  Shivers said many times the inheritance tax liability is so large that fanily members are forced to sell part of the company to pay the tax.

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