Record Numbers Gift Real Estate to Heirs to Dodge Tax

  • By Lee Mi-ji

    January 19, 2017 12:18

    Record numbers of people handed over their homes, land and commercial buildings to their children as gifts last year to save on inheritance tax, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport said Tuesday.

    Some 269,472 properties were handed over to family members, the biggest amount since statistics began in 2006.

    Instances have rising steadily since 198,403 cases in 2012. Some 80,957 cases last year were homes, up 10.7 percent from the previous year, and 42.7 percent of the transactions were concentrated in the Seoul metropolitan area.

    The main reason was to bypass hefty inheritance tax.

    Accountant Chung Yong-shik says, "Real estate received as a gift from parents more than 10 years ago is exempt from inheritance taxes when the parents die."

    "And even if less than 10 years have passed, the real estate is valued at the price at the time of the transfer, which is likely to be lower than based on current value," Chung adds.

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