Gifts to spouses

As long as your spouse is a citizen of the United States, a gift of any amount may be given to him or her with no gift tax liability and no requirement to file a gift tax return.

Annual Gifts

A person may give $15,000 in 2018 in cash or assets (based on the fair market value of the assets) to as many people as they wish per year. Gifts which exceed this amount for any recipient must be reported by the donor on a timely filed gift tax return.

Gift Tax Return

A gift tax return is required whenever someone makes a gift exceeding the annual exclusion to one person in any year or makes a gift of a “future interest,” and is due on April 15th on the year after the gift is made. The gift tax exemption is the same as the estate tax exemption, for example, $5,490,000 in 2017. So if a gift is made that exceeds the annual exclusion, a return is required, but there will be no tax due unless the gift exceeds both the annual exclusion and the gift tax exemption.