Annual Exclusion From Gift Taxes

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Annual Exclusion From Gift Taxes

When you  give large gifts of money to friends or family, the government wants to know about it, and you must report it on your taxes. There is a limit, or exclusion–an amount that the government will allow you to gift to a person per year, without incurring tax consequences. The limit is $14,000 per person per year.

For example, George and Mary Bailey want to give their four children money for Christmas, which they will put in investment accounts for them. George can give each of his children $14,000 each, a total of $56,000.

Mary can combine her $14,000 with George’s gifts, meaning the Baileys together can gift $28,000 to each child without exceeding the gift exclusion tax limit (since in the government’s eyes George gifted $14,000 per child and Mary gifted $14,000 per child). If you do the math, George and Mary can give a total of $112,000 to their children without incurring extra taxes.

If they give more than this amount, they will need to fill out IRS form 709 and potentially pay taxes. At the least, they will start using up their lifetime estate tax exclusion.

Here is a chart of how the annual exclusion amount has changed over the years:

Year Annual Exclusion Amount
2014 $14,000
2013 $14,000
2012 $13,000
2011 $13,000
2010 $13,000
2009 $13,000
2008 $12,000
2007 $12,000
2006 $12,000
2005 $11,000
2004 $11,000
2003 $11,000
2002 $11,000
2001 $10,000
2000 $10,000
1999 $10,000
1998 $10,000
1997 $10,000

Photo used under Flickr Creative Commons license.

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Austin Fey is a Wealth Manager at Marotta Wealth Management, specializing in charitable giving and asset allocations. She is a regular contributor to our Marotta On Money articles, often giving advice to those just getting started in finance.

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David John Marotta is the Founder and President of Marotta Wealth Management. He played for the State Department chess team at age 11, graduated from Stanford, taught Computer and Information Science, and still loves math and strategy games. In addition to his financial writing, David is a co-author of The Haunting of Bob Cratchit.