This is more of a curiosity question.
My mother died in 1989 and the estate tax return was filed and the tax
paid. In 2007, I found that the State was holding $220 in her name as
abandoned property. I plan to do nothing as the amount is so small.
But what if the amount had been large? Is there a time limit for
ammending an estate tax return?
Since the estate tax return is long past, no problems involving it.
$220 however is not so small an amount. If you are the sole heir, by
all means sign onto the state webpage for unclaimed property and find
out how to make the claim. If you and your sister are heirs, split it
with her. (grin
Harlan Lunsford, EA n LA
I should clarify: When I said that I planned to do nothing, I meant
tax-wise. The money was claimed and my sister and I took our families
out for dinner.
But suppose the amount had been $85000. It's too late to file an
amended estate tax return. Would the $85000 have been taxable income?
No, you inherited it. Inherited property is not taxable income to the
Katie in San Diego
The foregoing is intended for educational purposes only and does not
constitute legal or professional advice. Nothing contained herein is
intended to be used, or can be used, by any person to avoid penalties
that may be imposed under federal or any state law.
Then again, "heirs" do not file estate tax returns (until they die
So I believe the OP is asking whether the hypothetical $85,000 should
be (should have been) reported on an "amended" (supplementatl)
estate tax return, and would it be subject to tax.
I believe the answer to the first part is "maybe"; see below. Of
course, the answer to the second part is a definite "maybe" <wink>.
The taxability of any value in the estate depends on a great many
factors, not the least of which is the (remaining) lifetime exclusion
in force at the time of death.
But to answer the OP's primary question (is there a time limit for
"amending" an estate tax return): my mother's accountant told
us that the statute of limitations for amending an estate tax
return (aka a supplemental return) is the same as for normal tax
returns, and there is no point in correct mistakes after that. (Of
course, there is no statute of limitations for fraud.)
However, you do not mention whether your father is still alive and
whether your parents had an AB trust at the time of your mother's
death. My mother's estate attorney told us that the IRS might
review the estate tax return of the first deceased spouse in order
to qualify (or not!) the Decedent's Trust when the second spouse
dies. Arguably, that could open a can of worms if so much of
the mother's estate were unreported (hypothetically speaking).
Bottom line: for so small an amount (you said about $220), use
your own judgment. But if the amount had been large (e.g. $85K
in your hypothetical), you should consult tax and estate
professionals, as is always the appropriate thing to do when
"real money" is involved.
If you found assets, did you also find income? The "assets" may have
also earned a return you have neglected and the income tax return of
the estate may need to be amended. This is separate from and in
addition to the estate tax return.
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