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Gift Tax and the Non-Citizen Spouse

Gift box of money

I've discussed  'Mega Gifting' a lot lately, mostly because the unique opportunity to pass a large amount of money to your loved ones, tax free, will be lost on January 1, 2013.  Until then, this large gift will be available to every one you love…well almost.  

Many of you already knew that an individual may make unlimited lifetime or post-death transfers of property to a spouse free of estate and gift taxes- unless the recipient spouse is a non-citizen.,  Fact is, the tax free exemption for the non-citizen spouse is limited to $133,000 per year.   

Let’s look at example of exactly how this works. Jack and Jill are a married couple who hold title to their primary residence as joint owners.  Sam is a successful obstetrician who loves delivering babies but can’t afford another increase in his medical malpractice insurance. Sam decides to title the home solely in Sue’s name.  In that way, even if the worst happens and he is sued, the couple and their family will still have a roof over their heads.  If both Jack and Jill are U.S. citizens no adverse tax consequences result. However, if one spouse is a non-citizen, a taxable gift may very well occur simply by altering title to the home.

If you are interested in a more details on this topic as well as many others, please go to the homepage on my website and download the free report entitled “Estate Planning Issues for the Non-Citizen Spouse”. 

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We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
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Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Coronavirus/Covid-19
Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.