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My mother died in November 2011. My father's been dead for 13 years. April 15 is coming and I have no idea what to do (or if I should) file federal and/or state income taxes for my mother. She lived in a NH for all of 2011 until she died and her money was spent down on the monthly rent, but there was some money left when she died, which went to me, POD. There was no real estate.

My husband has always done our taxes and, for the past 5 years, my mother's. He's getting nervous about doing hers this year but we don't want to go to H&R Block or anything. I'm hoping it will be fairly simple. Do we need a special form? Her money did generate some interest, so if she actually owes taxes, do we have to pay it?

Any advice or information is very much appreciated. We're in NJ.

Thank you

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I don't really have the answers either, but I would suggest that since she's gone and if you inherited everything, I am very seriously question whether or not they can come after you since the debt is not in your name but it wasn't hers. I would hurry up and either transfer all the assets or sell off and use up all the money on your own bills so the money is completely gone as long as those bills are actually legit and you've been in debt for quite some time for something such as medical. In some cases, you can't really go after a dead person too well and in some cases, that's often are void as long as you have the death certificate to prove that person is dead. If the debt is not in someone else's name, then agencies can't really go after those people but they can go after the people whose name the debt is in but not really a dead person in all cases, I've heard of such cases where you can't really go away after them and agencies often lose out. There are other cases were agencies will actually either go after the estate if they find out someone's dead in due time, but there are other cases where they find out when it's too late and everything is already long gone.
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For everyone's information 1/4 of testable exam for CPA IS TAXATION. Further, most accounting work is RELATED to valuation and asset classification and period matching...ALL of these choices/items have tax consequences. As a CPA candidate, I was REQUIRED to take TAX LAW 1/2 , two semesters. I also had a masters level elective in special topics in TAXATION.
Any good CPA is a better risk to use for preparing your return! They have professional standards and licensing to maintain. Most CPA's are qualified to prepare most individual 1040s. They tend to understand the language of the IRS, too. H&R Block makes plenty of mistakes...don't assume.
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You will probably file a regular 1040/1040a form, the executor will sign, mailed return, attach certified copy of Executor paperwork to the return. If the interest earned was paid to her before her death, it was HER income. It is reported per 1099-INT issued under her SSN. If the interest was paid after her death, to the estate, 1099's may be issued to the heirs for any amount of interest greater than $10. It sounds like survivorship allows the account to transfer outside of the estate. That should be a non taxable event. However, any residual of an inherited IRA, or tax favored account WILL be taxable to the heir because it was pretax income of the decedent, unless it was a ROTH IRA. IRS gets their money at some point...
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CPAs do not always have any tax training. H&R block employees must pass an accredited tax training course and by federal law, take yearly refresher courses.
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Sorry to hear that your mother died.

This thread is several years old. You might get more responses if you posted your question as a new thread.

Who was the executor of the estate? They should have seen that the taxes were filed for the year that your mother died. Ask the executor to make sure the taxes were filed.
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How do I see if taxes were filed for my deceased mother the year she died?
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Based on your statement, the house would be owned jointly by you and your 2 sisters, each apparently having a fee interest. If title hasn't yet been transferred from your father to you and your sisters, that WOULD be the next step.

As Executrix, or Personal Representative as it's now known in some states, you would hire a real estate or elder law attorney to prepare and record the deed to transfer title from your father to (a) the 3 daughters or (b) your 2 sisters.

Expenses and income for the year in which this occurs would be prorated based on the date either of the transfer deed or the recording of it. I'm not sure of this, i.e., which date would govern. You'd have to ask the attorney who prepares the deed.

However, if your sisters want to retain the house and not sell it, the issue arises of what happens to your 1/3 interest. This is where it can get tricky:

1. If you want to remain a 1/3 interest holder, then the proceeds from renting all the units should be split between the 3 of you. And you each report that 1/3 income on your individual tax returns, as well as take 1/3 of the expenses.

And don't forget that it's rental income and needs to be treated as such on your income tax returns.

However, I'm assuming that the sisters aren't paying rent to themselves and you as owners. So some equitable arrangement needs to be reached to compensate you for your 1/3 share.

2. If you don't want to remain a fee holder, you should be paid your 1/3 share, and title transferred to the 2 sisters jointly. Then they only (not you) report the income from the rental units as well as the expenses, on their tax returns.

Whether there are 2 or 3 feeholders, each would contribute a proportionate share of the expenses of the house and pay an equally proportionate share of the taxes (and other maintenance such as Rental insurance coverage for the tenants, upkeep, property taxes, etc.). (And coincidentally, liability would be split among the owners, whether 2 or 3 sisters.)

But if the 4 family house was your father's only asset, once title is transferred to the 2 sisters or you and them, there shouldn't be a need for tax filings on his behalf after the year in which the transfer took place. There's no reason to keep his estate open once disposition of the house is made, unless there are other assets of which to dispose.
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LadyDi - what is the status on probate for your dads estate?
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This is exactly the same post from 17 hours ago. It does not answer any of the questions that I asked. Please answer the questions so that we can give you some answers.
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My Dad passed away 2 years ago, Nov. 2013. My CPA filed his taxes under his name as he had just passed in Nov. My Dad had a will which left his 4 family house to both me and my 2 sisters, and all bank accounts to me (all joint with my name included). We decided not to sell the house as 2 sisters live their and maintain the building. My concern now is who claims his taxes? I am the execturist.
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Sorry to hear about your dad dying. I am confused. He died in November of 2013. His CPA filed his taxes in 2014. What do you mean who claims his taxes?

Who actually owns the house? Is the house paid for? Who pays the property tax and home owners insurance?

Two sisters are keeping up a house big enough for four families? That is a huge house! Isn't that too big for them?

For the last month of 2013, you should have had to pay taxes on the accounts you held jointly with your dad. That is true of 2014 and 2015 as well?
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My Dad passed away 2 years ago, Nov. 2013. My CPA filed his taxes under his name as he had just passed in Nov. My Dad had a will which left his 4 family house to both me and my 2 sisters, and all bank accounts to me (all joint with my name included). We decided not to sell the house as 2 sisters live their and maintain the building. My concern now is who claims his taxes? I am the execturist.
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That is true, cmag. I didn't even think of that. Since you can't file for a deceased person online and there are no 1040s yet, it would be hard to file. Someone out there, e.g. the tax services, may already have them in their computers. I checked and saw the IRS has released the draft forms online as a courtesy. These draft forms can't be used for the final tax return, however. People have to wait for the official form.
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1099s are sent out by I think the end of January or February. I"ve gotten corrected 1099s from investments as late as March with my CPA does not like. I don't like it either.

One copy is sent to your deceased dad's old address and the other to the IRS. Those who send out the 1099s need to know the correct address to send them to, if that has not already been dealt with.

My memory tells me that you have to send a death certificate along with the return.

Even without the 1099 and guessing at it, you can't file because the forms have not even been made yet.
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jiminseattle,

Why the hurry for the tax refund?

There's a lot of anxiety here over something that will not move any faster than it does on each year's cycle.

Are you the executor? If you are not, then who is?

Social Security has been informed of his death?

Was his money moved into an the estate of _____________ account?

Is there a will?
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jiminseattle, you will have a harder time filing taxes without the 1099s. You can try, but there is information on the 1099s that need to be copied over. You also don't want to guess at the amount.

If someone dies in a year, they are considered as having been alive the whole year. They get the complete standard deduction (or itemized, if that is the case). SS will probably not be taxed unless retirement income was high. From what you write, it sounds like it wasn't.

You won't be able to file online. You will have to have the authority to file the tax return and to sign as a personal representative. If you are the executor of the will, there is no problem. IRS has instructions online about special things to do when the taxpayer is deceased. It is pretty simple.
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I meant the estate of not the state. This is what happens when you speak a post in via a smartphone.
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The bank should have already set up an account called the state of your father's name. Any checks coming to him such as a refund from the IRS would need to and only could be legally deposited into the account called the state of.
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Jim - also that refund is an asset of the estate. If there are any claims or liens against the estate, the IRS refund will need to be used to pay against those debts in order of how probate is done in your state.

All of this takes time. I'm dealing with my moms probate & her state allows 4 years for it to close.

Cashing in the deceased IRS refund to you personally has all sorts of issues.
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You will have to wait for the new documents to be printed and any updates made to the tax codes before it can be sent in. It often takes about a year to close someone's estate. Why the rush?
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You will probably have to wait until January as IRS does not usually print the 1040 Form for 2015 until after January1, 2016.
You will file return just as if Dad was still here - just put "deceased" at top of front page on 1040 Form.
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My dad died in March, is there anyway I can file taxes now rather than wait tip January, I'd like to close the estate. He collected some social security and retirement in 2015 so a refund is due.
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steve7274 I went through this back in 2013 when my father died. His trust was around 1 million between property and investments. It was not shown as income to any of the beneficiaries... and the only taxes we owed were on the dividends and other investment income that was received by the trust while it was open. Each beneficiary received a K-1 for their share of the income less expenses. I have always done my own taxes, as I have a "background" in finance... but not this time... I went to a CPA for the Estate and Trust stuff... I wanted to make sure it was done correctly! The CPA fees are an expense that can be allocated to the trust.
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Steve7274 do a google search on "family trusts and taxes" and you'll find a wiki from Motley Fool explaining trusts. There's also a good link from bankrate with more info about kinds of trusts and tax consequences. A lot depends on how the trust was set up. It's probably a good idea to either contact a good CPA or the IRS hotline: IRS Tax Help Line for Individuals (800) 829-1040.
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My Mother passed away back in 2007 and my father just passed away this April 2014. Many years ago they drew up a "Revocable Living Trust" and funded the trust with Annuities, IRA's, checking and savings accounts and their home and property totaling approx $250,000.00. I am now the trustee of the trust. I know I will have to file a income tax return and probably a estate tax return. My question is: will that $250m need to be shown as income on my fathers return in which the estate would receive a large tax bill and, would the distributions given to me and my siblings (4) which could be anywhere from $15m to $50m need to be reported on our own individual tax returns as income?
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I'd call the IRS help line to find out: IRS Tax Help Line for Individuals
(800) 829-1040
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My mother passed away in Feb 2013, when i file her taxes for a refund do i use her pin number or my pin number for the refund?
Thank you,
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cmagnum,

I'm still here - thanks for your answer. My brother and I were co-executors. Her bank account was not a joint one, it was in her name only, with Payable upon Death to myself and my brother. It earned some interest in 2011, so I figured she would owe something. I guess that'll have to come out of the inheritance. My husband will be calling the IRS - thanks to everyone who suggested that. The reason he (and I) don't want to go to H&R Block is simple: they charge money. We may end up having to spend some on a CPA anyway if this all gets too complicated, but her estate was so simple, I'm hoping we'll be able to figure it all out.
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DogGrrl, I hope you have not left for there is one thing that I do know about filing income taxes for a diseased parent. Who is the executor or executrix of her estate? The IRS will want you to contact them about her death, plus will want a copy of her death certificate and proof of who the executor or executrix of the estate is. Then, they will give you an ID number to write down beside the signature of whoever executes the will of her estate on the tax return. Also, the money that you inherited from your mother. Was it in a joint account with you having the right of survivorship with her being the main owner and thus liable for taxes on whatever interest that it earned before she died? While there will not be any inheritance tax on that money, whatever interest that account earned while she was alive is. When my mother could no longer do her taxes, as her durable POA, I had to get a identification number from the IRS to place on her tax returns that a CPA does. All they requested was a copy of the durable POA. I sign her taxes using my name with the id code. Why does your husband not want to go to H & R Block or anyone? I'd go to a CPA before I'd go to H & R Block.
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Before you go DogGrrl, I'd call the IRS and ask them what to do. I've had to call them in the past about something, and they were very helpful. Sorry about your mom dying. It will be a year next month since my mom died, so I hear ya. Bye.
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