Continuing our discussion of a personal representative’s federal income tax responsibilities on behalf of the estate, we will discuss what these responsibilities entail. As a personal representative, you will have to make sure you file all tax documents and forms in a timely fashion and pay any tax liabilities. You may also be responsible for filing individual income tax returns or the decedent’s final income tax return. You will have to comply with the strict deadlines imposed by IRS or request an extension of time. Once you fulfill your tax obligations, you can ask the IRS for a formal discharge of your tax responsibilities as a personal representative.
As an executor of an estate, you have a legal right to ask the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for a prompt federal tax assessment. A federal tax assessment is a calculation of the estate’s total federal estate tax liabilities, usually based on the fair market value of the total property and assets within the estate. The gross total value of an estate does not include certain types of property owned solely by the decedent’s spouse or other third parties. It does not include lifetime gifts the decedent made or any other property which the decedent has no legal obligation or ability to control. It may also exclude certain charitable bequests and dispositions. Speaking with an estate planning attorney can help you understand your tax responsibilities.