In This Season of Giving

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It’s likely that you will have finished the rush, stress, and joy of the holiday season by the time you read this blog. Despite this season of giving, there’s a gift you may have missed: your estate plan. However, estate planning is all about giving. It is not too late to consider using the following strategies.

Give Back to the Community Through Charitable Trusts

By establishing a Charitable Remainder Trust, you may be able to give a nice donation to a charity while reaping some additional benefits:

  • As the grantor, you can receive annuity payments from your charitable remainder trust. Your trustee manages the trust assets. Upon the termination of the trust, any remaining assets pass to the charity.
  • In addition, your taxable estate may be reduced by the amount transferred to the charitable remainder trust. Depending on other factors regarding your estate, your heirs may save on taxes when the time comes.

Other strategies hit a little closer to home during this season of giving.

Gifting Strategies That Help You and Your Family

You may have heard about “gifting” but were not sure how the process works.

IRS regulations allow taxpayers to give a certain amount of money (the annual gift tax exclusion) to others without incurring gift tax. At this time, the annual gift tax exclusion is $15,000. Taxpayers may give up to $15,000 per person to anyone, and this amount is doubled for married couples. For example, Linda and George may give their daughter, Rosie, $30,000 in cash or kind. However, if they give Rosie $50,000 cash and buy her a house, they must pay a gift tax or reduce their lifetime federal estate and gift tax exemption.

In addition to the goodwill that a gift engenders with the recipient, gifting reduces your taxable estate which in turn reduces the tax your estate may owe someday.

You may also consider the following ways of giving to your family:

  • Direct payments for college tuition and medical bills are not applied to your gift tax exclusion.
  • Contributions to a special needs trust or ABLE account may also be exempt from the gift tax exclusion.
  • Open a 529 account to plan for your child or grandchild’s education.

Always speak with an attorney before implementing gifting strategies.

Coordinate with an Estate Planning Attorney During This Season of Giving

As a Florida attorney board certified in Wills, Trusts & Estates, Attorney John Mangan helps his clients develop complete estate plans. To schedule an appointment, call us at 772-324-9050 or fill out our Contact Form. Our office is conveniently located in Palm City, Florida. We also help clients throughout Florida, including Stuart, Palm City, Hobe Sound, Jupiter, and Port St. Lucie.