Uniform Gifts to Minors Act - UGMA

Definition of 'Uniform Gifts to Minors Act - UGMA'


An act that allows minors to own property such as securities. The IRS allows persons to give so many thousands of dollars to another person without any tax consequences. If this recipient person is a minor, the UGMA allows the minor to own the assets without an attorney setting up a special trust fund. Under the UGMA, the ownership of the funds works like it does with any other trust except that the donor must appoint a custodian (the trustee) to look after the account.

Investopedia explains 'Uniform Gifts to Minors Act - UGMA'


The donor can appoint him/herself or another person to be custodian. The custodian, who has a fiduciary duty to manage the minor's assets wisely, can use the funds to buy securities on behalf of the minor. Access to the gift must be given to the minor when he or she reaches the age of majority, either 18 or 21 (sometimes even 25), depending on UGMA state law. Should a donor acting as the custodian die before the custodial property is transferred to the minor, the entire custodial property is included in the donor's taxable estate.


Filed Under:

comments powered by Disqus
Hot Definitions
  1. Direct Consolidation Loan

    A loan that combines two or more federal education loans into a single loan. A Direct Consolidation Loan allows the borrower to make a single monthly payment. The loan is facilitated by the U.S. Department of Education and does not require borrowers to pay an application fee.
  2. Through Fund

    A type of target-date retirement fund whose asset allocation includes higher risk and potentially higher return investments "through" the fund's target date and beyond.
  3. Last In, First Out - LIFO

    An asset-management and valuation method that assumes that assets produced or acquired last are the ones that are used, sold or disposed of first.
  4. Variable Universal Life Insurance - VUL

    A form of cash-value life insurance that offers both a death benefit and an investment feature. The premium amount for variable universal life insurance (VUL) is flexible and may be changed by the consumer as needed, though these changes can result in a change in the coverage amount.
  5. Monetary Policy

    The actions of a central bank, currency board or other regulatory committee that determine the size and rate of growth of the money supply, which in turn affects interest rates. Monetary policy is maintained through actions such as increasing the interest rate, or changing the amount of money banks need to keep in the vault (bank reserves).
  6. Weak Shorts

    Traders or investors who hold a short position in a stock or other financial asset who will close it out at the first indication of price strength. Weak shorts are typically investors with limited financial capacity, which may preclude them from taking on too much risk on a single short position.
Trading Center