How the IRS is involved in probate

If you are the surviving heir, will executor or other representative for a person who has died in Florida, there are many things you will need to understand about the probate process. Among these is how the Internal Revenue Service can be involved in probate.

The Florida Bar explains the year in which a person dies is considered to be the last calendar year in which an individual tax return must be filed for that person. This means that you or the appropriate representative will need to file a Form 1040 for the decedent for the year in which the death occurred. If the person made gifts to others before the death occurred, you will need to report that to the IRS as well. This is done through the use of a Form 709, known as the federal gift tax return.

In addition to individual taxes, you will also need to appropriately manage taxes on behalf of the estate. This may involve the filing of a Form 1041 which is the federal tax return for an estate. This return reports any income received by the estate. Depending on the full value of an estate, there may also be a need to file a federal estate tax return which reports the total estate. This is the IRS Form 706. These are just some of the tax documents that may be needed through the probate process.

To learn more about the tax consequences of handling a deceased person’s estate, please feel free to visit the post-death tax page of our Florida probate and estate planning website.


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