To reduce taxes on mineral right ownership at death, you can develop an estate plan that includes a revocable living trust. With a living trust arrangement, the trustee can deed the property to a beneficiary while still exercising his or her owners’ rights until death.

A living trust also allows your beneficiaries to avoid probate and increases the tax reduction at death.

Estate planning can be difficult, especially when mineral right ownership is involved; therefore, you should work with a Pennsylvania estate attorney to ensure that your beneficiaries are protected.

Transferring your mineral right ownership into a living trust varies based on whether the rights are deeded or non-deeded. If you have deeded mineral rights, you will have to create and sign a new deed transferring ownership to the trust. If you have non-deeded rights, you must assign your lease or royalty interest to the name of the trust.

This process can be more complicated, as you may have to contact the company that provides the royalty payments to learn about their procedure. The taxes for mineral right ownership can be quite expensive, depending on the total value. In addition to paying Pennsylvania inheritance tax, your beneficiaries may also be responsible for paying Federal Estate taxes.

Contact a Pennsylvania Estate Attorney

With proper planning, you can help your beneficiaries obtain a tax reduction at death. The Pennsylvania estate attorneys at Unruh, Turner, Burke & Frees are dedicated to helping you with your trust and estate needs. Contact our law office at 610-692-1371 (West Chester), 610-933-8069 (Phoenixville), or 610-240-0750 (Malvern) or fill out our convenient online form today.


David M. Frees, III
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Attorney, Speaker and Author