Gift-giving season is finally over. Or maybe it's not.
If you had a good year and want to share the wealth with family members or others, in 2010 you can give a gift worth as much as $13,000 to an unlimited number of people without incurring any tax liabilities for either you or the recipients. If you give more than $13,000 to any one person this calendar year, you could be liable for a gift tax, which is as high as 35 percent. If you feel really generous, you can give another $13,000 per person on Saturday, when the new tax year begins.
As long as you stay under the $13,000 limit, you don't have to file any forms with the IRS when April rolls around. On the other hand, you cannot deduct the gift from your 2010 taxes.
For more information on gift giving and its tax implications, download a copy of "Introduction to Estate and Gift Taxes" from the IRS website at www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p950.pdf.