Costco has been selling caskets over the internet for the last five years. But, because of regulations that make a sale in that state unattractive, they are not selling them in Georgia.
As soon as Walmart recently announced that they are also going to be selling caskets online, they received a letter from the Georgia Secretary of State’s office. That letter told them that they are required to register with the state if they want to sell funeral merchandise and, until that process has been completed, they cannot sell caskets in Georgia.
So if you live in Georgia and want to buy a casket, at least for now you’ll have to do it the old fashioned way – buy it from a casket store or a funeral parlor. You won’t be able to buy it from Costco or Walmart online.
On December 3rd the House passed H.R. 4154, the Permanent Estate Tax Relief for Families, Farms, and Small business Act of 2009 by a vote of 225 to 200.
The bill willl permently extend the tax exempton and the maximum tax at the current rate. As of 2009, the estate tax deduction is set at $3.5 million for individuals and $7 million for married couples and the maximum tax rate on estate is 45%.
Last week, Senator Pomeroy introduced H.R. 4154. The bill is scheduled for discussion and a vote later this week.
The language in H.R. 4154 is very short and to the point.
This Act may be cited as the “Permanent Estate Tax Relief for Families, Farmers, and Small Businesses Act of 2009″.
The bill includes this language: ” A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to repeal the new carryover basis rules in order to prevent tax increases and the imposition of compliance burdens on many more estates than would benefit from repeal, to retain the estate tax with a $3,500,000 exemption, and for other purposes.”
If passed, the bill freezes the maximum gift tax rate and estate tax rate at the current 45%.