Angel of Death Tax Break Law and Legal Definition

Angel of death tax break is an U.S. tax provision which steps up the basis of property an heir or will beneficiary receives from a decedent. Under the angel of death tax break provision, estate property is usually valued at its fair market value on the date of the decedent's death and increase in value of property accumulated during the life of the deceased owner is taxed in the deceased owner's estate. The income tax basis of the property in the hands of the new owner is also the fair market value and the new owner only pays capital gains income tax on increases in value after the decedent's death.