Married couples can transfer property to each other in the form of bank accounts, investments, real estate, businesses, etc., without any federal gift or estate tax consequences. Indiana residents can put their spouse as joint owner on bank, investment accounts and real estate and not suffer an estate or gift tax consequence.
However, this is not true for LGBT couples in domestic partnerships who remain unmarried. In Indiana, unmarried LGBT couples do not enjoy this freedom from gift tax. Many LGBT couples don't realize that putting their partner's name on their house or bank account, or anything else that may be considered jointly owned, is considered a gift, one that is reportable on a federal gift tax return if its value is more than $14,000 in any one year.
These typical transactions and the co-mingling of assets between domestic partners could lead to serious adverse consequences if not reported or documented correctly. In some situations, even housing, food and other living expenses shared by a same-sex couple can be considered gifting if one partner is paying those bills.
The Law Office of Barbara J. Baird can advise you on these issues and help you ensure that you, and your finances, are protected. We have decades of experience working with LGBT couples to protect their valuable assets by helping them legally and financially plan for pitfalls like the Indiana inheritance and Federal gift taxes.
For those in domestic partnerships, powers of attorney and guardianships are crucially important for LGBT families to protect their rights to inherit, to make health care decisions or manage financial affairs on behalf of incapacitated partners, and to receive custody of any children.
There are numerous ways to address issues of protecting your partner and children if something happens that do not run afoul of gift and estate tax rules. Attorney Barbara J. Baird has experience at helping Indiana LGBT clients in dealing with taxes, inheritance and other estate planning issues, and she can help you, too. Contact the Law Office of Barbara J. Baird for a free initial consultation. Knowledge of the Law is Power.
Carefully planning your estate can be one of the most important steps you take to protect your partner and your relationship. Indianapolis, Indiana LGBT will and trust attorney Barbara J. Baird can help you. Call her at her Indianapolis office today at 317-637-2345.