Last month we shared five things that can still be done in December to minimize your 2020 taxes. With only a day left in the year, the number one thing you can still do to offset your taxes is to GIVE.
Giving is a tax one two punch – lowering taxes today and tomorrow.
Charitable contributions are tax-deductible in the year you make the gift, either to your favorite organization or your Donor Advised Fund. By contrast, gifts to individuals provide a longer-term benefit – they are a great way to lower your overall estate and reduce the amount that is potentially subject to estate taxes in the future. Cumulative gifts to an individual up to $15,000 [$30,000 for a married couple filing jointly in 2020] are under the annual gift exclusion and do not require a gift tax return to be filed. If you give more than $15,000 to one person, you may have to file a gift tax return, and we would encourage you to consult with your tax professional. Of course, for clients of Hill Investment Group, we handle the consultation and coordination.
Need a push to give to the next generation sooner rather than later? In many cases it makes sense to give your loved ones part of their inheritance when they may value it the most – while you are still here to give it to them. Giving the annual exclusion can move significant amounts of money from inside your estate to your beneficiaries outside your estate. Below is a crude example showing the power of this simple planning idea:
John & Jane have 3 married children and 9 grandchildren:
Gifts to children/spouses per year: $180,000 ($15,000/person * 2 (John & Jane) * 2 (child and spouse) * 3 sets of children)
Gifts to grandchildren: $270,000 ($15,000/person * 2 (John & Jane)
Over 20 years, assuming no change in the annual exclusion amounts, this moves $9,000,000 from inside John & Jane’s estate to outside their estate. Assuming estate taxes are 40%, this saves $3,600,000 in taxes. It also gives children/grandchildren funds much earlier, allowing the gifts to be acknowledged, discussed, and put to use during one’s lifetime.
For more information on gift taxes, visit the IRS page here or connect with a member of our Hill Investment Group team to discuss.