Changes to state tax code strengthens future of Pennsylvania family farms

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CAMP HILL, Pa. – Pennsylvania Farm Bureau praised members of the state General Assembly for approving changes to the state tax code that will help preserve the economic viability of Pennsylvania family farms.

The changes, signed into law by Gov. Corbett, include a provision that exempts from inheritance taxation the passage of farm assets from a deceased individual to close family members who continue the farm operation.

Exemption

Another change to the tax code provides an exemption from realty transfer taxation of farm property as part of the reorganization of a family-owned farm business to a limited partnership, limited liability partnership or a corporation managed by the same family.

“The change simply allows farmers to get the same tax treatment as other family-owned businesses. Families in non-farming businesses in Pennsylvania are already provided an exemption from realty transfer taxes when they reorganize and put their assets in the name of the business created through reorganization.

“The legislation would allow farm families, who want to change their current business structure into a more helpful one for the family (like a limited partnership), that same exemption,” said Carl T. Shaffer, PFB president.

Requirement

Farm Bureau notes that the exemption would still require 75 percent of the business to be owned by members of the same family making up the family farm corporation or family farm partnership.

“The changes should also benefit rural communities and the state’s economy, because family farms in Pennsylvania typically spend a vast majority of their income close to home, supporting local businesses and jobs, along with agriculture-related businesses,” concluded Shaffer.

Pennsylvania Farm Bureau is the state’s largest farm organization with a volunteer membership of more than 53,000 farm and rural families, representing farms of every size and commodity across Pennsylvania.

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