Economic Definition of gift tax. Defined.
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Term gift tax Definition: A tax on the transfer of assets from one person to another. The gift tax is different from estate and inheritance taxes in that it applies to people who are still alive. In fact, the gift tax was created because people sought to avoid estate and inheritance taxes by giving their stuff away before dying. But all gifts are not taxed. There are both annual and lifetime exemptions on gifts subject to this tax. These exemptions are changed from time to time, so you might want to investigate further if you happened to hit the big jackpot on a television game show. Some, but not necessarily all of that prize is likely to be taxed.