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2023 will bring about a number of estate planning opportunities with the most notable being an increase in the lifetime gift and estate tax exemption of US$860,000. This will raise the threshold from US$12.06 million per individual to US$12.92 million per individual ($25.84m per couple).

This will be of interest to those who have maxed out their lifetime gifts, as individuals will be able to make additional gifts to their trusts of US$860,000 (US$1.72m for a couple).

Importantly, these record-high exemptions are set to expire by December 31, 2025 – it is therefore crucial that those wishing to take advantage of the exemptions act sooner rather than later. Gifts and estates in excess of the exemption amount are subject to a 40% federal gift or estate tax.

There is also an increase to the annual gift tax exclusion to US$17,000 per recipient, the highest amount ever. This can be made to an unlimited number of individuals without using the lifetime gift tax exemption.

The annual sum that an individual may gift to a non U.S. spouse will also increase to $175,000

With these new thresholds coming into effect on January 1, 2023 please get in touch if you would like to consider making additional gifts to a trust in the new year to take advantage of the increased exemptions.

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