Blog Post

Take Note: Significant 2024 Gift/Estate Tax Exemption Inflation Increases

Future Wealth Navigator

The New Year brought inflation adjustments to the federal and some states’ gift/estate tax exemption amounts, thereby increasing the amount individuals can gift during life and at death free of federal and state gift and estate tax. Given the significant 2024 inflation adjustments, particularly with respect to the federal gift/estate and generation-skipping transfer (“GST”) tax exemption amounts, the New Year presents a prime estate planning opportunity not only for those individuals who have not previously engaged in significant gifting, but also for those individuals who previously made gifts to capture their exemptions and who now have additional exemption available.

The Federal Gift, Estate, and GST Tax Exemption Amounts

Under current federal law, the federal gift/estate tax exemption amount (i.e., the basic exclusion amount) is an amount equal to $10,000,000, adjusted for inflation since 2017. In 2023, the federal gift/estate tax exemption amount was $12,920,000, which increased to $13,610,000 with the 2024 inflation adjustment (a $690,000 increase).

In addition, the federal generation-skipping transfer (“GST”) tax exemption amount is an amount that mirrors the basic exclusion amount. Accordingly, the federal GST tax exemption amount also increased from $12,920,000 to $13,610,000 as of January 1, 2024.

These amounts will continue to increase for inflation each year until December 31, 2025. Under current federal law, the increase in the federal basic exclusion amount is scheduled to automatically sunset on December 31, 2025, from $10,000,000 plus an inflation adjustment, to $5,000,000 plus an inflation adjustment. As such, on January 1, 2026, the exemption amounts are scheduled to be automatically slashed by approximately one-half.

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