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How To Fill Out Form W-4

Readers Respond: Would You Move to Minimize or Avoid Taxes?

Responses: 22


Do people really move to a new state to avoid taxes? I say yes because during my 10 years of experience as an estate planning attorney in Florida, I'm going to estimate that at least half of my clients have changed their primary residence from a state that collects an income tax and/or an estate or inheritance tax - such as Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio or Pennsylvania - to Florida, which doesn't collect an income tax, an estate tax or an inheritance tax.

For information about the types of taxes collected in each state and the District of Columbia, refer to the State Tax Chart.

For a list of states that currently collect an estate tax, refer to the State Estate Tax and Exemption Chart.

For a list of states that currently collect an inheritance tax, refer to the State Inheritance Tax Chart.

For information about becoming a Florida resident, refer to How to Become a Florida Resident, Officially.

So what about you, would you consider moving to avoid state income taxes, estate taxes or inheritance taxes? Or how about expatriating from the U.S. in order to avoid federal taxes?



J. Smith

I am going to move to a non taxing state. I have been a tax paying peaceable citizen my whole life, and I'll be damned if I give another cent dead or not, to the state upon my demise..........This money has already been taxed at the time it was earned.
—Guest Julianne Smith

What about snowbirds?

Darrell, I am a snowbird and spend 8 months in Florida and 4 months in Illinois, so it works for me!
—Guest Susan the Snowbird


There are some cases where moving may pay off. But in MOST cases, the cost of selling one's home at today's lower prices - plus the move itself - plus the emotional price of leaving friends behind - actually moving, physically, is a VERY costly - well - move! Some of the people who are moving to save estate tax, are spending dollars to save dimes. In many (most) cases, a well designed estate and/or business-continuation plan may not avoid the tax - but can significantly reduce the estate tax liability. Physically moving from one state to another simply to avoid estate tax, is a mear-axe option.
—Guest Darrell

The only tax you choose to pay

I don't fully understand the lengthy debate. You can avoid the estate tax all together with a properly drafted and funded irrevocable trust. The same trust will avoid probate and qualify you for medicaid benefits. Watch this video: http://www.ultratrust.com/revocable-trusts-vs-irrevocable-trusts.html

Virginia to Florida - For Tax Avoidance

Bells Yes .. We are making plans to move to Florida in 2011 which was based entirely on tax decisions. Our Fed Gov retirement pensions are not taxed by the State of Florida, as well as no Inheritance Taxes against our children. It's sunshine, piña coladas, and pool time.
—Guest Kay

Estate planning professionals

If you want to make sure you hire a guru estate planner, go to www.actec.org. This organization only allows seasoned attorneys to join by invitation. Also, to protect your wealth, the affluent should consider an asset-protection trust situated in the Cook Islands to be integrated with their estate plan. I'd refer you to Barry Engel in Denver CO or Howard Rosen in Coral Gables FL for these services. The article was good, but it did omit some basic "estate freeze" options to keep appreciating assets from increasing the tax bite (e.g., Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts, etc.). I think it would be best for our country to eliminate the estate tax because it kills the importation of investment and job creation from wealthy foreign entrepreneurs and with no estate tax (and no step-up in tax-cost basis), the IRS could tax all inherited stock portfolios at capital gains rates with a zero cost basis thereby increasing overall revenue to the government (without killing family businesses).
—Guest Robert Pullis, JD LLM

Usurping what doesn't belong to Tennesse

TN gift receivers use gifts to build homes, buy goods, even food!! All That helps TN economy. Welcome to Texas. No gift tax or inheritance tax, 8.25% state tax, no food tax. A few years ago I went to TN thinking I might move near family. Too costly - I'll stay in Texas & in time I hope my family will move here.
—Guest Yes

Bahamas/ Florida For Sure!

Yes, we are actually looking at becoming residents of the Bahamas and just visiting a few months a year on travel visas. This will save millions on taxes and we can leave more of our estate to our children and grandchildren.
—Guest Pilar

repeal of estate

Hell YES Michigan is right next door and does not have an estate tax. I don't even have to go as far as Fla or TX
—Guest chris k.

Wow...did we luck out!

We live in MA, but bought a "snowbird" home in Florida last December (they are almost giving them away...prices are WAY down). Since we want to leave our entire estate to our son and a few other family members and friends, we'll just plan to leave this Earth after selling our MA home and shuffle down to Florida. We'll work on our tans, rather than have worked many years for assets that we'll give away to MA. By the way, this is a fabulous site! So glad I found it!! THANK YOU!!
—Guest Alan G

Answer to State Estate Tax Question

John, unfortunately if you move to a new state but still continue to own real estate in your former state, then your former state may be able to collect an estate and/or inheritance tax.

State Estate Tax Question

If you move to a state without tax, do you still have to pay estate tax to original state if you continue to own property there?
—Guest johnk

Moving to avoid estate tax

Yes! In Oklahoma there is a death tax and this greedy state takes from the dead so don't die, drive fast to any border and then you can croak!
—Guest Phil Lowry

Every man for himself except ........

Why would anyone decide to pay more to support the crooks who participated in creating the financial crisis? Moving might be the only way to protect yourself and your family from further theft of your assets.
—Guest thinking23
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