Shawn J. Roberts

Writing about law, technology and productivity

Estate and Gift Tax

Who pays the IRS tax on a “gift”?

Do you know who pays the tax on gift that is subject to federal estate tax? In a previous post, I described what the IRS considers to be a gift. If a gift has been made and there is no exclusion connected to it, gift tax may be due.  However, while a federal gift tax […]

When is an IRS gift tax return required?

It is important to know when gifts you make trigger your obligation to file a federal gift tax return (IRS Form 709, United States Gift [and Generation-Skipping Transfer] Tax Return).  I have heard the IRS doesn’t take kindly to individual who fail to file required tax returns 🙂 If a person makes an annual gift […]

What is the IRS annual exclusion?

Every US citizen has what is known as the annual exclusion which allows the person to gift away up to whatever the current year amount is without either having to file an IRS Gift Tax Return or being subject to any tax. The annual exclusion amount for 2015 is $14,000.00. That means an individual could […]


How are the federal estate tax and gift tax connected?

Do you know why the federal estate tax and the federal gift tax are often addressed in the same discussion? Although the federal estate tax and federal gift tax are separate statutes, they are connected by what is known as the unified credit. The unified credit is automatically provided by the IRS Code to every […]


What is the federal estate tax?

According to the IRS, the estate tax is a “tax on your right to transfer property at your death. It consists of an accounting of everything you own or have certain interests in at the date of death.”  The top federal estate tax rate for property transfers that are not otherwise credited or excluded is […]

What is that coupon (unified credit) the IRS provides?

Do you know what the Internal Revenue Service and your local grocery store have in common? They both provide you with coupons you can apply to reduce the amount you required to pay! Well, the IRS’s “coupon” is not exactly like scoring big with a $2.00 off coupon for Tide Detergent.  The IRS administers the […]


How does the IRS unified credit work?

In a previous post, I talked about the IRS unified credit, the IRS version of a coupon.  Here are some of the specifics on the unified credit. The unified credit for people passing away in 2015 is approximately $5.4 million. That number is indexed to inflation and will rise a small amount each year and […]

You need to know . . . when the IRS thinks you have made a gift

Since the word “gift” is at the heart of federal estate taxation, it makes sense to understand how the IRS views the term IRS Gift.  The IRS states that a gift is: The gift tax is a tax on the transfer of property by one individual to another while receiving nothing, or less than full […]