Pres. Obama and the Republican Congress have agreed that the estate tax will come back in 2011, but at an exemption and rate that many Republicans have been arguing for. Under the deal, the estate tax exemption would be up to $5 million for individuals and $10 million for couples. The tax rate would be at 35%. The exemption and rate would be in effect for two years.

We know where the estate tax will be for 2011 and 2012 but there is still tremendous uncertainty for 2013 and beyond. This decision saved a lot of people from “conveniently dying” this month but has just delayed the issue of a permanent solution.

It should also be mentioned that while the estate tax receives the most publicity, probate is still the biggest threat to most families.