Each individual is permitted to gift $15,000 in assets each year without tax implication. $15,000 is the annual cap for federal gift tax purposes. There is not a gift tax in Pennsylvania. Even individuals who gift above this yearly threshold, may not need to pay taxes. Amounts in excess of the yearly limit can be assessed against that individual’s lifetime gift tax exclusion. Presently, the lifetime gift tax exclusion is 11.18 million. Most individuals will not exceed that sum over the course of their lifetimes.

You should be aware that gifts made within a year of death may be subject to Pennsylvania inheritance tax depending on the amount and nature of the gift. There are some gifts that are non-taxable and do not count against your annual exclusion or lifetime exemption. Gifts between spouses can be unlimited. Payments for tuition or medical expenses paid directly to respective institution or facility on someone’s behalf are not taxable. Gifts to political organizations and charities are also under the umbrella of non-taxable gifts. Any individual making a taxable gift above the annual exclusion must complete Form 709, the Gift Tax Return. Filing of the return does not mean any taxes are due however if still within your lifetime exemption. Consult with an experienced estate planning attorney to make further understand your options in making gifts as part of your estate plan.  By April M. Townsend