No! Just because the gift and estate tax exemptions are at $5.12 million per person right now, it doesn’t mean you need to have over $10 million to engage in useful planning. We know the exemptions and tax rates are set to change as of January 1, 2013, but we don’t know what they will be. One proposed change is to reduce the gift tax exemption to $1 million, though the estate tax exemption could be higher. Thus, even if you don’t plan to use the entire $5.12 million exemption this year, if your gift would be more than $1 million, now is the time to do it. There are many non-tax reasons to engage in estate and gift planning as well: appointing guardians for your children, updating your estate planning documents, or protecting your estate from creditors. Now is a great time to contact your professional advisor.
Kari A. Brotherton
Ryan, Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
1201 3rd Avenue, Suite 3400, Seattle, WA 98101
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