The Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 (ERTA) provides a gradual increase in the unified credit which by 1987 will exempt estates of up to $600,000 from estate taxation. The unlimited marital deduction and the increase of tax-free gifts to an amount of $10,000 per year per donee has freed many farm families from the gift and estate tax burdens that arguably had been causing the break-up of small farms (U.S. Congressional Record, vol. 122; Begleiter). At the same time, however, the estate tax relief resulting from the provisions incorporated in ERTA has not completely remedied the tax problems of farmers. Farm estates greater than $600,000 are still subject to taxation. Expensive technology together with inflation and the appreciation of the value of farm real estate will undoubtedly continue to cause the value of many farm holdings to increase in size beyond the amount exempted by the uniform tax credit. The resultant estate tax liability could require the sale of farm assets in order to raise cash to pay these taxes. Thus, estate planning techniques which diminish estate taxation are still important to farmers.