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Biden Plan Would Limit Longstanding Tax Break Used by Farmers

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President Biden has said his tax proposals would make big business and wealthy investors pay their fair share.

His package would also likely deliver a blow to American farm owners by limiting a longstanding tax break. The provision allows landowners to defer paying capital-gains tax when they sell investment property and put the proceeds toward the purchase of other real estate.

Farmers for generations have used the tax break to cheaply and quickly relocate farm operations to lands with better soil, diversify the crops they grow and consolidate land holdings. Some have used it when exiting the farming business at retirement. Farm owners in 2012 held 915 million acres, about 40% of the land in the continental U.S.

Farmers and land brokers said the latest proposal, capping the profits from land sales that can be tax-deferred at $500,000, would add another burden on farming.

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