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Investments glossary

Step-Up in Basis


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A step-up in basis is the readjustment of the value of an appreciated asset for tax purposes upon inheritance.1 The higher market value of the asset at the time of inheritance is considered for tax purposes. When an asset is passed on to a beneficiary, its value is typically more than what it was when the original owner acquired it. The asset receives a step-up in basis so that the beneficiary’s capital gains tax is minimized. A step-up in basis is applied to the cost basis of property transferred at death.

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