The most important element in determining gift and estate liability is the value of the asset being transferred. To reduce that value, estate planners create family limited partnerships (FLPs) and family limited liability companies (LLCs). The theory: Because the donee or legatee now has only a noncontrolling interest in the asset — a closely held, not readily marketable entity — his interest in it is worth less. Values have been discounted by up to 60 percent.
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