Lifetime gifting strategies serve an important role in estate planning, particularly when it comes to wealth transfer tax planning. Marital deduction planning and the creation of various types of trusts aren't the only methods of excluding assets from an estate for estate tax purposes; the more a person gives away during their lifetime, the smaller the gross estate will be at their death.

Individual gifts made during a person's lifetime will escape taxation as long as they are made in amounts below the annual exclusion amount ($14,000 in 2013). Some gifts, such as those made between U.S. citizen spouses, to a charity or paid directly towards tuition or medical expenses, are excluded from the federal gift tax altogether, regardless of their amount. Because making gifts throughout someone's lifetime will both help achieve wealth transfer goals and minimize the gross estate, it is important that the exposure to gift tax is recognized and planned for appropriately.



Gifting Strategies

Related Articles
  1. Financial Advisor

    How to Gift Your Way to Lower Estate Taxes

    Estate planning is not just for inheritance. High net-worth individuals, who plan properly, can gift their money and save on taxes.
  2. Insights

    Gift-Giving Etiquette

    Here's a look at how much you should spend and what you should give this holiday season.
  3. Retirement

    4 Thoughtful Retirement Gift Ideas for Men

    This"best gifts list" of the most thoughtful retirement gifts for men includes items appropriate as gifts from co-workers, friends or family members.
  4. Retirement

    Top 7 Estate Planning Mistakes

    Many people try to avoid this process altogether, making things difficult for heirs.
  5. Taxes

    Valuable Year-End Tax Moves for 2016 (Part Three)

    Here's a look at tax strategies for itemized deductions, charitable gifts and other tax credits.
  6. Financial Advisor

    Family Business Estate Tax Loophole Could Be Closed

    The Treasury department is aiming to close a loophole that would result in higher estate and gift taxes for some wealthy business owners.
  7. Personal Finance

    How to Talk to Your Family About Christmas Gift Budgets

    Talking Christmas gift budgets with family members can be hard, but having the talk will help you stay on track financially.
  8. Taxes

    Tax-Efficient Wealth Transfer

    Taxpayers with large taxable estates were required to take steps to reduce them before 2011.
  9. Taxes

    Planning For The Estate Tax's Return

    The 2010 estate tax lapse could be costly to your family if it keeps you from planning.
Frequently Asked Questions
  1. Where else can I save for retirement after I max out my Roth IRA?

    The first option to explore is to determine if you can contribute to a 401(k), 403(b), or 457 plan at work. If your employer ...
  2. How did George Soros "break the Bank of England"?

    In Britain, Black Wednesday (September 16, 1992) is known as the day that speculators broke the pound. They didn't actually ...
  3. What counts as "debts" and "income" when calculating my debt-to-income (DTI) ratio?

    It's important to know your debt-to-income ratio because it's the figure lenders use to measure your ability to repay the ...
  4. Who are Monsanto's main competitors?

    Learn about Monsanto Company's two main operating divisions and its main competitors within each sector, including The Mosaic ...
Trading Center