Gifting as part of your Estate Plan

Gifting is an often overlooked tool in estate planning. It can be used to reduce the size of a taxable estate and thereby reduce the taxes due upon death. Congress has allowed a yearly amount (in 2013 it is $14,000.00) that we can each gift to anyone without any tax consequence.

There are times in more complex estate planning when it makes sense to give more than this yearly amount (whether in cash, stock or real estate) and to take advantage of the life-time exclusion amount on a federal tax return and still avoid having to pay any gift tax. Filing a federal gift tax return and using some or all of the lifetime exclusion will address the taxes due.

Gifting, however, means that you lose control of the asset. If you gift away the family home in order to take it out of your estate, it is no longer your home. So if you gift away one hundred
thousand dollars, be sure you don’t need that money. We can advise you on the proper use of gifting as part of your estate plan.

A generous man will himself be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor. Proverbs 22:9

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