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Dying in 2010 saves Steinbrenner financially

July 14, 2010 3:24:12 PM PDT
George Steinbrenner as principal owner of the New York Yankees has an estate estimated at $1.1 billion by Forbes Magazine.

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With Congress allowing the Federal Estate Tax to lapse during 2010, Steinbrenner's estate could end up not having to pay hundreds of millions of dollars.

"In the sense of protecting his $1.15 billion fortune this was an opportune time, for Mr. Steinbrenner to pass away," said Michael Ozanian, National Editor of Forbes.

in 2009, with the estate tax at 45 percent, the tax liability could be almost $500-million. In 2011, with the top rate expected to be 55 percent, the tax liability would have been closer to $600 million.

"One thing they could do is pass along the estate to his wife in which there would be no estate tax," adds Ozanian.

Enormous tax responsibilities, in the past, have carried a hefty price tag.

The family of P.K. Wrigley was forced to sell the Chicago Cubs to pay taxes on Wrigley's estate after his death in 1977.

In the case of the Yankees, reportedly estate planning issues for a transfer to Steinbrenner's children have be dealt with.

Yankees president Randy Levine tells the Associated Press, "There are no succession issues, and that the team will not be sold."

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LINK: newyork.yankees.mlb.com

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)

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