Hailing end of Pa. inheritance tax on family farms

    Pennsylvania lawmakers and Gov. Tom Corbett are celebrating the law signed last month to remove the inheritance tax for family farms.

    Jay and Jeff Grove, co-owners of Gro-Lan Farms in Franklin County, say the tax exemption will bring their family and others peace of mind.

    Jay Grove says farming families have long discussed concerns that paying the taxes on inherited land could force them to sell chunks of their property, or the whole thing.

    “Once you lose a farm — a dairy farm, especially — it won’t come back,” he said Friday

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    For a family farm to qualify for the exemption, it must generate $2,000 a year, and the heirs of the property must keep using the land for agriculture for seven years after the death of their parent or sibling.

    Before the exemption was signed into law, the inheritance tax on family farms was between 4 percent and 12 percent, depending on the heir’s relation to the deceased farm-owner.

    A sponsoring state lawmaker says the exemption will cost the state between $4 million and $5 million over the next three years.

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