Racing to find political common ground on estate tax policy before the Bush administration tax cuts expire, congressional leaders are urging Republicans and Democrats to “think outside the box” when considering reforms.Among the alternatives placed on the table for discussion during recent Senate Finance Committee hearings: proposals to tax the beneficiaries of inheritances, rather than estates, as well as options under which estate taxes would be levied based on the heir’s “access to sophisticated tax advice.”

Representatives of the accounting profession, however, remained squarely inside the box in issuing their recommendations for estate tax reform to the committee.

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