With the repeal of the Ohio Estate Tax, signed into law by Governor Kasich on June 30, 2011, decedents dying on or after January 1, 2013 will no longer be subject to Ohio estate taxes.  Ohio’s current estate tax scheme, which will remain in effect until that time, imposes a tax of 6% on a decedent’s assets in excess of the $338,333 exemption, and 7% on assets in excess of $500,000.  Ohio’s estate tax exemption had been the lowest among all 50 states, with New Jersey being the next lowest at $675,000.  Now, combined with a current Federal estate tax exemption of $5 million and the ability of a married couple to double that exemption amount automatically through the use of portability, Ohio has made itself a much more attractive location for wealthy individuals and small businesses, especially when compared to neighboring states like Kentucky who still impose an Inheritance Tax on transfers made at the time of death.

By Jessica B. Rawe