50% Inheritance Tax on Billionaires (Should we have one?)

Recently I heard on the news that Samsung heirs are paying a massive amount(11 Billion USD) in inheritance tax. Do we have one? Is it implemented properly? If we have one, will it be a part of reducing income inequalities in capitalist countries? Did Gina Rinehart and James Packer pay any inheritance tax? Please vote yes if you want an inherent tax on Billionaires in Australia

Poll Options

  • 307
    Yes
  • 366
    No

Comments

  • +1

    UK has an inheritance tax, its gamed to no end.

    Makes very little return

    • +1

      Source?

      People said that about the mining tax but that was bs.

    • Inheritance tax receipts in the United Kingdom amounted to approximately 5.32 billion British pounds in 2020/21, compared with 5.36 billion pounds in the previous financial year, which was a peak for this provided time period.

      https://www.statista.com/statistics/284325/united-kingdom-hm....

      You raise a good point. I hope that eventually the Australian government goes after those to ensure they pay their fair share.

      • +4

        remember we are talking about the obscenely wealthy

        what's the obscenely wealthy value - but it would have to include liquid assets and other assets like houses/boats/planes

        I dont understand people who dont fit into this category (so 99% of people) defend against putting tax plans like this in place

        people who earn 150k and live in sydney with a mortgage are far from wealthy given if you buy a sydney house on a 20% deposit, your spending a huge chunk of money on your repayments.

        • We defend against it as it is a slippery slope with very little return. once they start with it you can bet your house that the next government will need some cross bench or greens support and then instead of the ultra wealthy it will be the greens definition of wealthy which is anyone that earns more than a cleaner. All it is, is an attempt to spite the super rich and if done it will come back to slap us all in the face (note I don't stand to inherit anything and I have no kids that I need to pass my estate too so I aint just protecting myself).

          • +1

            @gromit: we cant forever be scared of a slippery slope in the opposite direction.

            if you ask me every time an election comes around we sink further and further down the slippery slope favoring the ultra wealthy.

            • @MrThing: of course not, but pointless taxes like this that will yield little and probably drive even more money of shore are moronic. They achieve little and cost a lot while opening us up to the inevitable tax creep.

        • +1

          There is a fairy tale, supported by the wealthy but not entirely created by them, that goes like this:

          In life there are producers, who produce and make life better. And there are leeches, you exist only to suck the life out of those around them.
          Billionaires, landlords, the liberal party, anyone with money.. these are all producers
          'Dole bludgers', unions, the labor party, the greens, leftists, SJW, communists, socialists, etc etc.. these are all the leeches.

          If you support the producers, you may one day become one of them. But even if you don't, by supporting them you will better off, because they will create a fair and honest system that you can live and thrive within, where hard work is rewarded and you keep what you earn.
          If you support the leeches, you might see some small improvement in the short term, your pound of flesh to enjoy as they feast on the large prey, but eventually once they've consumed or scared away all the producers, the wealth will be gone.. and then they'll come after you.

          The whole thing is such cartoonishly simple that you wouldn't believe anyone could build a world view around it.. but then most people are quite simple at their core.

  • +3

    An 'inheritance' is just a gift that occurs on death.
    Do you want to apply your query to ALL gifts? If not, why not? What is so special about passing a gift on death that it should be treated differently to an inter vivos gift?

    • +1

      Sure, gift tax. If Person 1 gives a billion to Person 2, pay 30% tax above $100 million. Person 2 gets net $730 million.

      Person 1 gives $101 million to Person 2. Person 2 gets $100.7 million.

  • +7

    I agree that the government should target generational wealth, but there are many issues with inheritance tax. The Samsung guy billed with US$11b tax — how is he going to pay for it? Rich people don't keep all the wealth in cash in the Swiss bank, and they usually need to liquidate assets (i.e. selling Samsung shares). Who would suddenly need to buy $11b of Samsung share? That means the share price would crash, to a point that the Samsung guy might never be able to sell enough shares to pay off the tax.

    The same thing can happen to OzBargain, if government decides to collect inheritance tax from my kids if I suddenly pass away. The "consultants" can valuate this website to a bazillion dollars which (1) might be far from the truth value (2) can't be easily converted to cash due to being a private company. Inheritance tax in this case can easily kill off a business.

    • how is he going to pay for it?

      From my limited reading, it looks like they need to pay on cash but can pay on a plan. One article talks about a paying an inheritance tax over ten years, so they don't need to sell straight away. I don't think the kids are going broke any time soon with $10b!

      I think the government should give the option to transfer assets to tax office with the valuation of shares of COB at date of death. Would that be better? So, if company like Ozb becomes worthless/gazillion next day, the government will get worthless/gazillion too.

    • +1

      Wouldnt Mr Scotty have set up a family trust?

      Thats why this whole thread has so many holes

      • Won't ATO say, Scotty's beneficary share in the trust goes to other beneficiaries and thus taxable?

        • +1

          except of course if the Trust is setup correctly it is untouchable by the government, doubly so if they do it overseas. This is the exact problem the UK government has found after implementing inheritance tax, any bugger with enough money is setting up trusts so they pay nothing.

  • +3

    The Government stealing money from people is wrong, be they poor or wealthy. It wasn't right when Robin Hood's King John did it and it isn't right now. Taxation is appropriate, but excessive taxation is immoral (yes, even of wealthy people).

    • Yet it's completely fine that a lot of billionaires probably made their money via dodgy practices rather than actual hard work. Let's be real, they don't have any morals to begin with.

      • +1

        If they made their money through dodgy practices is because there is something wrong with the system. We can't penalise everyone and just assume every rich made their money through dodgy practices, and that rich have no morals. That's just judgemental, and unfair.

        If individuals do dodgy things, those things should be addressed so the dodgy rich are penalised not for being rich but for the dodgy things.

        Becoming rich through one's own efforts is not a bad thing.

        • The system in which they influence…besides, that's just one of the reasons, but while I do believe there are a handful that deserve what they made, there are plenty that haven't and I've already outlined another reason why we should tax them in my other comment. Either way, I think the positives on society if done correctly could be huge and to stop it on this primitive idea that they worked so hard to make a billion dollars which is around 300-400 lifetimes worth and that all this money which is mostly generated by the general population should go to a handful of individuals is quite absurd. If we don't start doing something, it will just progressively get worse over time because surprise surprise, if you have money, it's easier to make money. All because what? It's 'wrong' or theft to take 7 billion from someone who has 10 billion? Those poor souls, however will they survive on a measely 2 billion dollars. God forbid we feed people with it!

          • @bkhm: I disagree with you in many ways but that's pointless to discuss them.

            The reality is that if we tax that money we won't be feeding people in Australia or in Africa. We will be buying nuclear submarines and things like that.

            We are talking about billionaires here but why don't you give your money to starving people?

            Let's say your annual income is 100k when many families in the world live with less than 2k a year.

            In this scenario, which is a real one, why is it wrong to take money from you and give to starving people? Why don't you stop

            Maybe you get your 100k a year through dodgy practices.

            How do you dare spending money with headphones, streaming services and VPN, when many people don't have something to eat?

            I'm sorry but unless you abandon any kind of luxury in your life, including absolutely everything that you don't really need, and give your own money to "people who need more than you", you are just being an hypocrite.

            • @this is us: Actually what you said is what I plan to do, I'm a student so I don't make a lot but I live quite frugally and donate a proportion of my pay because you're right, we don't need much to live on and often living a luxurious lifestyle contributes to a large amount of co2 and waste. Even with my own inheritance, when my parents bring it up I tell them I don't want it or it's going to charity. Because like you said, the money we often spend on luxuries can do a lot. I'm not saying none of us deserve it or can't have it, but I don't see how a billion dollars isn't enough. Either way, if it's not feeding kids in Africa, we could use it to fund research, education, health care etc. You're right though, the only thing I'm hesitant about is the dodgy political people in the system. Again, I don't see how leaving someone with a few billion is stripping them of any luxury.

              • @bkhm: That's your choice, not theirs. People have different goals in life and that's fine. Just quickly checking some of your posts and getting one simple example. You want your money to pay for an SUV that is safe for you and your family.

                You don't need a car. You want a car because maybe life would be harder if you didn't have one.

                You don't need a streaming service.

                You don't need to travel.

                You don't need most things but you want a lot of things and that's fine.

                My point is not about how those individuals would (not) be affected if you just take billions from them, but that it's not fair to take something from anyone just because they were able to achieve that. If they got that through dodgy practices, that's a different problem to be addressed.

                Society moves forward because people have ambition, and we want money to pay for whatever we want.

                If people didn't have dreams and things to buy, you wouldn't be able to choose from many restaurant in your area, or many car brands and cars with many different options, or even browse the internet. You wouldn't be able to travel overseas, maybe not even interstate. You wouldn't have a smartphone and wouldn't be able to stream movies and TV shows on your TV sitting on your comfortable couch.

                Everything exists because people wanted the money and rewards they could get from what they have created. Wars contributed to technological development, people wanting money is the key for everything that we've achieved as a society.

                You have your own ambitions and goals, those goals will change many times in your life, but you can't assume everyone else has the same goals, and people shouldn't have the same goals because we are all different.

                I bet even if you actually do what you are saying and give all your extra money to people who need, that might not be enough. If you drink anything that is not water, if you eat anything that is different, you are spending money that could be used to feed people who have nothing to eat. Therefore, anything is luxury when you compare to those who have nothing.

                • @this is us: yeah I kinda knew you were going to lead to that. Again, no one is saying strip them bare. I don't see how someone who would've earned 10 billion before now only earning 5, would somehow stop their motivations either. It will literally make no difference in their lives. I mean we already have a progressive tax system and a lot of countries do with the point being, to keep wealth inequality at a relative amount. I'm not going to say everyone should make the same, of course not, but it's just natural that those with money will continue to accumulate money and that's not good for society by any means and for those people to even continue to make money, you need a fairly strong middle class.

                  Again, I agree, consumerism is what helps development but you're going to have less of that if inequality keeps getting larger. As well as travelling and all that, that's a whole other debate but yes, I do think we need to re evaluate how we live our lives because it's not sustainable, irrelevant to this argument though.

                • @this is us:

                  People have different goals in life and that's fine.

                  Yeah, some people aspire to help the poor, some want to be a mechanic, still others wish to spend millions or billions influencing governments to further their own interests at the expense of the poors.

                  No big difference between these things.

    • +2

      even if they're dead?

  • +4

    I'm not sure if I'll become a millionaire (100% I won't become a billionaire) but I'm going to follow in the footsteps of a lot of actors and rich people which is, my kids ain't getting shit. I know this is completely untrue, but I would like every kid to have the same opportunities, work for it, and make their contribution to society. I'll give my kid what I think every kid deserves and that's it, no matter how wealthy I am. If his hard work and intelligence isn't enough to get them where they want without advantages, then they probably don't deserve it. Whatever I die with will go to charity.

    In terms of everyone saying government taxation is immoral would rather watch as society inequality increases until you have almost slavery than tax the rich is hilarious. I'm no economist but clearly it's much easier to make money when you have money, like monopoly, thing eventually get to a point where you have a small percentage hoarding a large proportion of wealth until the game stops. Taking money from the rich isn't meant to be stealing or double taxation, it's meant to keep inequality low and develop society. 1 billion dollars in education, healthcare, research, infrastructure, or even just the general society among 1,000 people is much better than sitting in the bank account of some billionaire. There is a limit to how much a person should have and if you think someone who's accumulated enough wealth to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a day for several lifetimes shouldn't have some taken away and redistributed back to society then there's something wrong with you. Believe it or not, that money they earned was more likely through the hard work of others which they set up. Or worse, their 'hard work' was nothing more than political bribes to set things up in their favour, plundering natural resources, or negatively impacting others. But gotta love poor ozbargainers defending billionaires from theft when they're probably doing most of it and wouldn't hesitate to (e.g. jobkeeper) lmao. And James Packer who made his billionaires through a casino which no doubt, contributed to money laundering in this country, but nah, can't tax the poor guy. That would be theft, let his family and grandkids and future grandkids be billionaires as well for the fact that somewhere down the line, their great great great grandfather had a casino monopoly.

  • -2

    I think we first need an environmental inheritance tax - to pay for all the air pollution, CO2 emissions, land clearing & species extinction one contributed to in their lifetime
    I calculated about $50K per person at the moment.
    The rate would decrease over time as citizens pay true economic costs while they're still alive (eg: CO2 tax, emission trading tax, etc)

    • -1

      disagree, this doesn't take into account the person/s in this case which may have lead a 'clean' life doing all they can to reduce their CO2 emissions. Doing this, will mean people will stop taking responsibility and simply say ah well my $50K will cover it.

      • Very much doubt Boomers & Silents did much to minimise CO2 & air pollution emissions unit recent times (& even then their voting preferences still show they couldn't care less). So what's your suggestion for the cumulative damage the Boomers & Silents have done during their lifetime?

        • Not sure what groups have to do with any of it, though you would have to show me that it is the Boomers and Silents that have caused it to start with. Do you drive a car? Do you have a phone? Do you use electricity? All these contribute. With the Boomers/Silents, you are lumping everyone together based on their age and not their individual merrits, this is wrong. Attacking a class/group of people is simplistic and lazy and doesn't address the problem itself.

          The questions should be looking at addressing the problem (air pollution/CO2 emissions, land clearing etc) and devising a solution. ie: Ok, how do we reduce air pollution/co2 emissions etc.

  • +8

    I am amazed how everyone is against the inheritance tax. Surely the government would be able to fund a large portion of our country through inheritance tax, therefore being able to reduce our income taxes. It would reduce the wealth gap between rich and poor. The only issue I think is that people would find ways around it.

    • Because introducing an inheritance tax would not reduce your income tax, you can bet on that. And we all know governments are greedy. There's nothing stopping them from lowering the inheritance tax threshold whenever they like. It'll start at 10 million, and slowly drop to 5 million and then a million. Just look at how they're raising retirement age every year, it won't be long before you can only take out your super when you are on your death bed.

    • +1

      That's naive.

    • +1

      Look at the reality. They are already buying nuclear submarines..

  • +3

    These policies overwhelmingly target the rich and ultra rich not really the average nest egg. The average Aussie is too dense to realize that. Any sucker saying no to inheritance tax must like carrying the burden of taxes (through other means) out of the goodness of their hearts.

    • +2

      exactly the average aussie is probably dozens of millions of dollars away from where an inheritance tax might begin. yet they defend against it.

      • +2

        B-but maybe one day I'll be a multi-millionaire!

  • +1

    How would giving the government more money solve anything? They are phenomenally useless, a tax break for small businesses, that would be great and boost the economy.

    • +4

      I do not think people are against that.. how about we tax the inheritance to be able to give small businesses a tax break? I believe the point of people that would vote for the inheritance tax is exactly something like this.

    • +2

      if the government weren't so incompetent they would sell it as, inheritance taxes above a certain asset $$ value, get an estimate on returns then reduce tax from another stream

      we are about to lose revenue from fuel levies over the next 30years(??)…whats the plan?, use an inheritance tax to fill the gap and dont charge people a road users charge - funnel the money back to the state governments to fill the gaps

      keeps the majority happy and a very small minority instead of passing on 100% of their obscene wealth passes on only 80%(??) say.

      • I think what people are overlooking is , inheritance of that amount being taxed would change the ownership of the business. If you inherit an estate like Samsung , major part of that would be Samsung shares , possibly controlling amount , you get taxed on that and unless you have that in cash , you may have to sell your family business.

        Let's scale it down , you inherit your late parents million plus family home , and are forced to either pay half the value to the tax man to keep it or sell it and give half, that's a pretty bad situation to be in for most people who want to keep the home.

        • This Is the best argument, the government should not profit over people deaths. We had a death in the family, insurance paid out but we had to pay tax on the insurance pay out, it was absurd, handing over hundred of thousands to the government. This was cahs though, fairly easy to to just split a bit then hand over to the elites. If it was a physical item than that would have been brutal.

          Yes, you have to pay your taxes on income, we can all agree on that, but it should stop there. Too many taxes on top of taxes, its all becoming too corrupt. A house was purchased on taxed income repayments, it doesn't need to be taxed again.

    • +1

      Its about shifting the tax burden onto the rich. To relief some pressure off Mr and Mrs normal

      • -2

        The rich alresdy pay an absurd amount of tax, ata a point, we need to stop discouraging people from becoming successful and making money and jobs for the country, we don't want to force all the successful people to leave the country so us "normal" people who generate very little in terms of creating any wealth have smart people to Leach off.

        • +2

          That is a load of indoctrinated elitist crap. The real rich avoid their taxes and I don't think they'll simply just give up on their money making ways if we make them pay their fair whack for a change.

          • @burns13: They do pay an absurd amount of tax, the real smart ones abuse loop holes which shouldn't exist, that's a problem in itself but a billionair still pays hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes and provides jobs, you pay 30k, who do you think contributes more to the conomy?

    • +2

      Tax breaks do not boost the economy.

      Public spending on the other hand does.

      • +1

        Tax Breaks for Mr and Mrs Normal directly stimulate the economy by increase their spending power. Whereas tax Breaks for the rich basically increase their savings accounts, investment funds, property fortfolios.

    • So you're in favor of an inheritence tax, as long as the money is directed towards providing small businesses with tax relief. Is that right?

  • +5

    When Clive Palmer and the UAP started the lie that Labor planned a death tax, SO many people believed it and voted against Labor.. Labor failed to address the lie effectively. This despite the fact that Morrison refused to say that he WOULDN’T introduce a death tax.so a death/inheritance tax will never be introduced under this federal government except, perhaps, on low income earners. Look at Job Keeper. Claimed $150 in over-payments from my daughter, but left Gerry Harvey and Nick Scali etc alone. Total failure as a government for the people.

    • +3

      refer to my comment above.

      this is that slippery slope favoring the wealthy already occurring and it'll only get worse as their doesn't seem to be any appetite from the current government to rein it in.

      lets hope that the PR spin king (hardly a king, hes a fukn dud) has cooked his goose and they will be out shortly

  • Yes, inheritance should be treated as income if you are not a dependant.

    Ie first 20k etc etc etc up to the top rate - Normal income tax

    That's why super rich people have trusts set up with allowances rather than lump sums paid - makes much more sense, and much less tax paid

  • +2

    I think we're the only OECD country that doesn't have it, even the US has it!

    I think we should have it, but on on estates over a certain value and it should be a high watermark. The percentage should be 50% or anything crazy like that.

    10% on estates >$2m
    20% on estates >$5m

  • +2

    Here's how it works in the UK.

    Normal people pay 40% inheritance tax on estates that are worth over £325,000.

    Super rich billionaires (inheriting 140,000 acres, including a couple of entire suburbs in central London for example) pay practically nothing.

    https://www.theguardian.com/money/2016/aug/11/inheritance-ta...

    • +2

      Close the loopholes? The inheirtance tax from UK has been a while and obviously loopholes pop up over time.

      By your logic that some loopholes mean we shouldn't have a tax? Then should we drop company tax as Google/etc use loopholes?

    • +1

      So create legislation that prevents this? Don't let the people who are most going to benefit fill it with loopholes (a la Costello)?

      The choices aren't just "do nothing" or "do a shit job".

      • Are you suggesting the UK has these loopholes on purpose? Why else wouldn't they just 'create legislation' to prevent it.

  • Why? So the government can buy more submarines?

    Better give a ubi

  • no, that is just theft of money.

  • +1

    Rookies. The Samsung heirs should've claimed it was from a blind trust and feigned ignorance on its source.

  • No. Because billionaires will move elsewhere leaving the country poorer. Should be same rule for everyone.

    Also, if just billionaires, then they can transfer assets at high hundred millions.

    • +3

      I'm happy to take over billionaire's fixed assets here. I hear iron ore is profitable. Oh no, my children will only get 30% less inheirtance of their millions!

  • +3

    Only a poor ass would want others to pay more tax to fund Centrelink

    • +1

      Sounds like you support more tax to fund centrelink!

      • +1

        Centrelink is my money launderer shhhhhh

  • No i do not support any taxes when we have both state and federal governments that are terrible at managing money.

    • "As a government I can tell you you're not spending it that well that we should be paying extra" - Kerry Packer

  • +1

    Death tax is irrelevant .

    The scale of a worldwide , moderate (annual?) wealth skimming tax for the mega all the way up to the obscenely rich would be like a mosquito biting an elephant
    - they (the rich) would not feel it .
    Governments could use this to lift billions out of poverty and suffering .

    • +1

      Why not both? I'm for making wealthy and multi national companies paying their fair share.

  • I support equal taxes to everyone, and never 50%, which is about what anyone whose income is over $180,001 is already paying (45% for the amount above the 180k).

    That's already atrocious and I can't say federal and state governments know what to do with the money.

    Not popular to talk about unfairness, and many people might say that's Karen's problem, but when one pays 45% taxes and have no children, and don't directly use education, and have to pay private health insurance to avoid the levy surcharge, plus many other federal, state and council fees for everything else, one could wonder if the "proportionally fair" has become unfair.

    My view on inheritance is that taxes have already been paid, probably more than once. Additional taxes are double taxation, and shouldn't happen.

    I know some people like to punish the rich, sometimes just for being rich, and I am not even rich to defend the rich, but I think that's just wrong.

  • +6

    Billionaires, Yes.
    Millionaires, No.

    Just compare the bottom of the 1% to Jeff Bezos. Millionaires are poor compared.

    • yep, i dont give a shit about any billionaire. i dont know any, you could take about 90% of their shit and they'd still be insanely wealthy

      but a 'millionaire' could be a retired couple with a PPOR house in… kellyville… or penrith

      the US kind of has the right idea, up to $10 mil. and there's no inheritance tax

      the reality is if you had $10 mil. assets in aust, you're set for life anyway… and your kids.

      • You could take 99% of a billionaire's wealth and they still wouldn't have to work a day for the rest of their lives.

  • absolute specious argument given its a vote loser and this and every govt. are full on investment property rent seekers anyway

    you look up the assets of just about any politican and you will see they own 3 - 5 - 9 or 10+ properties and/or 'blind trusts" (LOL) slash investment vehicles

    i dont blame them… if you're on $175-$350k a year then what do you invest in?

    given that you are kind of limited in that if you're a defence minister, can you invest in thales or boeing or grumman???

    or if you're health minister do you invest in CSL or private health or pharma?

    further the US does have inheritance tax on $10 mil plus estates but you can easily bypass that anyway.

    I do get it, gen X and Z are about to literally inherit the earth as was owned by boomers. Something like I dunno… must be $20 trillion in wealth. It would be nice if the govt. gets some to pay for the $80bn in submarines coming…

  • Samsung's been a interesting development - technically he hasn't lived for years but has been on life-support battling this out in the courts as the forced sale of all those shares has the potential to seriously devalue the corporation or cause it to collapse. It's a little different in SK however as Samsung did receive HUGE government support so not entirely unfair.

    Not thinking for myself but I would be for a 50% wealth inheritance tax as a way to provide a better society for generations to come and to minimise this ever-increasing divide between classes.. As to where the money goes, undecided but perhaps into a ESG bond or fund

    • there's the pervading view that the govt. is all about wasting taxes on $80 bn subs and $440 mil on great barrier reef studies and $30 mil gifts to Foxtel and $22 mil to HN… no one wants to be involved in that.

  • +1

    I feel uncomfortable with the concept of a billionaire when there are countries in this world in poverty from repeated pillaging and propping up of corrupt governments by richer countries in order to extract resources from them. If you reduce the concentration of wealth at one end, you have the means to support the other, and then you reduce the extremes of both.

    Jeff Bezos did the initial hard work. But later he had thousands of workers doing the hard work while he collected extreme profits. It doesn't sit right with me. I don't know what the answer is and I don't think it's as simple as 'tax the rich', but I do think minimum wage (especially in the US), needs to give people the means to lift themselves into a better life. I do think there should be a baseline at which everyone is supported (food, safety, shelter, health, and education), so they can flourish, and I don't think that people should be breaking their backs only to watch the profits of their work fly off into space.

  • +3

    I think there should be a sliding scale of estate tax for EVERYONE, with corresponding reductions to income tax.

    No-one chooses to be born to poor parents and there's nothing virtuous about being born to rich parents. Some of the laziest people I know are the children of rich parents, and that laziness creates economic inefficiency. The only argument against inheritance tax that I can think of is that the wealthy will lose systemic advantages and be required to compete on a level playing field.

    Generational wealth also creates an unequal playing field and discourages people who have a lot to offer from playing a 'rigged game'. If two students are competing for good grades and one student needs to work 20 hours a week (in addition to all the other difficulties that go along with being self-sufficient) while the other is able to focus completely on their studies, the poorer student will be unable to compete unless the rich student is extremely lazy.

    I can't think of anything less 'Australian' than allowing generational wealth to go untaxed. Not taxing inheritance only promotes inequality of opportunity.

    • I do get that but what do you think politicans want?

      From labor to lnp they're all wealthy.

      They want their children to inherit so they'll never cut their own knees off.

      Also I would say Australian society is anything but fair… look at the rise of billionaires here. Kerry Packer? The media giants, the mining folks…

      Walk around Vaucluse etc.

      Thats all old money. Look at the divide of public vs private schools. Look how the PM says he would never put his kids in a public school.

      • Australia is not a utopia, but it's a loss less corrupt than most societies. I think it's a bit of an overreach to say that "Australian society is anything by fair" as we have social programs which simply don't exist in many countries.

        We elect our politicians, so I think we all need to take a degree of personal responsibility for their failings. It's easy to point the finger and forget that we have some responsibility to create the change we want to see, even if it's just presenting cogent arguments to convince and educate our fellow voters where their interests really lie.

        • I can vote for the politicians I want to see in parliament but unfortunately I don't get to vote for the big money pulling strings.

    • -1

      Were you born in Australia? If so, you were born to rich parents.

      Wealth is relative. You are so rich and I doubt you'd want to equalize your wealth with the global average

      • +1

        equalize your wealth

        So everyone on the planet would have a net worth of $45k? Doesn't sound too bad to me.

        • I like it how some people seem too think that Australia is a monolith.

          Do people in Wilcannia have the same opportunities as someone born in Beecroft, my 'hood'.

          Further as an avg. Australian citizen your influence is barely anything in this country and yet you want to compare Australia to some countries in abject poverty,,, or someone who lives in Wilcannia or Brewarrina?

  • All inheritance should be taxed…. besides even millionaires let alone billionaires aren't that dumb to leave themselves exposed to some petty tax designed for peasants on minimum wage or centrelink lol. Personally I'd like 50% tax on every type of inheritance item that requires some kind of registration/permit/title/ account… proof of legitimacy. Let's face it ever then most people will syphon out their funds and property into mumbo jumbo family trusts or some other crap. This is where communism was good … everyone poor…f everyone..1% rich…atleast everyone was kinda exactly in the same boat and we all hated the guy who ran the joint I… fascism kinda same thing. The whole thing is a meme anyway. Capitalism free markets and democracy means we can all fear, fuk , scum and scam each other over with a smile on our face and say " it's just business" … I'm part of the system don't blame me blame the game.

  • +1

    On every dollar above one billion (in the estate), inheritance tax of 50% makes sense for Australia.

    If you're against that, I really genuinely want to know your rationale.

  • If OP got his way it would be amazing how many people who want to stay in OZ would have 999 mil inheritances with creative accounting .
    Over that are gone . Use Great Briton as an example of what happened with the Smarties on lower inheritance taxes .

    • I hope so. Imagining Australia without Murdoch would be amazing!!!!

  • We should have a straight wealth tax, inheritance taxes tend to have too many loopholes - too many ways for the mega rich to get around them

  • +1

    Why should tax be paid twice?

    • +1

      Some might argue that billionaires barely pay it once.

      • -1

        Yes but if my parents paid income tax to pay off their house why should I then be taxed if I inherit their house? Before you say tax capital gains I think if you go that route any interest paid should then be tax deductible off gains.

        While it sounds like a noble policy we aren’t living in a Socialist country

        • -1

          Your parents paid their tax.
          Some ppl still think billionaires avoid paying the tax they should.

    • +2

      Twice or thrice? I form a company and hire an employee for 100k. The company gets 1mil revenue. 10% is GST so thats 900k. Then I have to pay wage of 100k, so 800k. Then company tax of 30% sadly that means 540k for me. I pay it to myself but pay 40% on it!! What happened here was at least triple taxation!!

      Point is, many things in life are taxed often. A kid getting 1 billion for free should share some (ie 30%) with society.

  • -1

    But you miss the biggest point. None of the billionaire own the wealth directly, it's all tied up in family trusts. They control the wealth, they don't own it.

    But lets assume they do own the wealth and continue the thought experiment.

    For starters the government is not very efficient in managing capital. I'd rather have it remain in the private sector it will still be income creating tax assets, will be more productive and create jobs.

    Also the situation could create some preserve outcomes. If the government taxes the inheritance, then 50% of the assets would need to be liquidated. Most billionaires wealth in is shares of companies they control. Therefore selling down $500m in shares could mess with the market.

    It could also have political parties trying to align their election campaigns and spending promises based on the assumption of prominent billionaire citizen dying during their tenure. That's a weird lottery if I ever heard of one.

  • The reason for Inheritance / Death Tax is because most wealthy people are able to structure their income affairs so that they pay almost zero tax.
    Eg Blind Trusts, Family Trusts, and I don't know what.
    Basically it is the Government/Tax Department admitting that they can't close the loopholes.
    Only wealthy people can afford the Top Notch Tax Accountants that can set them up in such a situation.
    Consumption tax is another tax that can't be avoided, but raising that would be a vote loser too.
    If everyone paid their fair share, then tax rates would be much lower.

    • except of course the same thing they use to structure their affairs to avoid tax (trusts) is also a method to avoid Death Taxes, The US and UK has death taxes and these are the primary methods used to avoid them. So saying that is a reason for Inheritance tax is just silly as it is just another tax they won't need to pay.

  • -1

    Tax is already way too high in this country.

    • +4

      How would you like the govt to pay for hospitals and education?