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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/gifts-are-not-taxable-income-to-you-no-matter-how-24285262.aspx

Subject:  Re: Avoiding gift tax via a Corporation Date:  6/29/2006  2:19 AM
Author:  ptheland Number:  87598 of 121144

Gifts are not taxable income to you no matter how large they are. So you don't have a concern about receiving more than $12k in a year.

Gift taxes would be a consideration for the giver - your parents. If they give more than $12k per person per year, they have to file a gift tax return. They probably won't have to pay any tax unless they've been quite generous in the past, as there is a $1 million lifetime exclusion from gift taxes.

If your parents now have a sizeable estate, they may want to give the money away so that any appreciation in the money escapes estate taxation. And since the $1 million gift tax exclusion is a part of the $2 million estate tax exclusion, it can make sense to use that up now instead of waiting until their demise.

If your parents don't have an estate in excess of $2 million, it really doesn't matter if they give the money to you now and have to file a gift tax return. It's just a little bit of paperwork and won't actually generate any taxes that must be paid.

Most of this is way beyond DIY planning. They (and perhaps you) should probably talk to a professional familiar with estates and planning for them.

--Peter
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