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Grandchild in college this fall? Paying tuition could save gift and estate taxes

August 20, 2014

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Now’s the time of year when many young adults are about to head back to college — or to enter their first year of higher education. If you have a grandchild who’ll be in college this fall and you’re concerned about gift and estate taxes, you may want to consider paying some of his or her tuition.
Cash gifts to an individual generally are subject to gift tax unless you apply your $14,000 per beneficiary annual exclusion or use part of your $5.34 million lifetime gift tax exemption (which will reduce the estate tax exemption available at your death dollar-for-dollar). Gifts to grandchildren are generally also subject to the generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax unless, again, you apply your $14,000 annual exclusion or use part of your $5.34 million GST tax exemption.

But tuition payments you make directly to the educational institution are tax-free without using any of your exclusions or exemptions, preserving them for other asset transfers.

This is only one of many strategies for funding college costs while saving gift and estate taxes. Please contact us for more ideas.

© 2014

All content provided in this article is for informational purposes only. Matters discussed in this article are subject to change. For up-to-date information on this subject please contact a Clark Schaefer Hackett professional. Clark Schaefer Hackett will not be held responsible for any claim, loss, damage or inconvenience caused as a result of any information within these pages or any information accessed through this site.

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