Deathbed Tax Planning

Reprint No. 2020:38

Author(s): Oscar Erixson and Sebastian Escobar Year: 2020 Title: Journal of Public Economics Volume (No.): 185 (May)
Online article (restrictions may apply)

We estimate the extent of inheritance tax avoidance among married decedents in Sweden. Following Kopczuk (2007), we compare estates of decedents who pass away from terminal illness and those of decedents who pass away suddenly, the assumption being that the onset of terminal illness triggers planning. Extending on Kopczuk (2007), we also use exogenous variation in the incentives for tax planning created by an inheritance tax repeal in Sweden, which allows us to account for factors related to illness that may affect the estate value but are unrelated to tax planning (e.g., increased medical expenditures and lost income). Unlike earlier studies, we find no evidence of end-of-life inheritance tax planning, suggesting that this was of little importance in the setting we study.

Erixson, Oscar and Sebastian Escobar (2020), "Deathbed Tax Planning". Journal of Public Economics 185(May), 104170.

Interdisciplinary European Studies

The European Union and the Return of the Nation State


This book explores the complex and ever-changing relationship between the European Union and its member states. The recent surge in tension in this relationship has been prompted by the actions of some member state governments as they question fundamental EU values and principles and refuse to implement common decisions seemingly on the basis of narrowly defined national interests.

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