Reference: https://smartasset.com/estate-planning/massachusetts-estate-tax

The MA estate tax has an exemption of 1 million, but once you are over, it looks like the estate tax is applied to the entire amount and not just the amount over the exemption. That creates a bizarre scenario: If your estate is $1M you pay nothing. If it's $1,000,001 you pay $33,200. I.e. the incremental tax rate on this one extra dollar would be a whopping 3,320,000%. That's 3 million percent !


  1. Is my assessment correct or am I missing something?
  2. What's a good strategy to avoid this if you are hovering near the threshold?
  3. Why would they even define tax brackets below $1M? I don't see any scenario where these brackets would come into play other than establishing the base line tax at >$1M

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