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Tax Reform Drives New Discussions About Life Settlements

Implications for estate-planning professionals.

Within hours of the passage of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the Act), the blogosphere lit up with articles about how provisions in the Act would suddenly induce more life insurance policy owners (POs) to do a life settlement—a transaction in which the PO sells his existing policy to an unrelated third party for a cash amount greater than the surrender value and less than the death benefit. POs have a legal right to sell their existing life insurance in the regulated and institutional


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