The gift tax only kicks in after lifetime gifts exceed $5.34 million in 2014
The first thing to know about the federal gift tax is that gift givers—not gift recipients—have to pay it. Thankfully, you won’t owe the tax until you’ve given away more than $5 million in cash or other assets during your lifetime. The lifetime exclusion will be raised to $5.34 million starting in 2014. If you’re married, your spouse is entitled to a separate $5.43 million in 2015. So actually owing the gift tax is not a concern for most folks. But you may still have to file gift tax returns even though you don’t owe any tax. So please keep reading.