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Lev
Lev, Tax Advisor
Category: Tax
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estate costs exceeded estate value

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My son dies Jan 31, 2007 on a fishing vessel off the coast of Maine. He did not have a will. His estate has no value. Since there was no body to declare dead, I was required to work throught the Court System to have him declared dead and have a death certificate issued. I also had to work with the Court to have me designated administrator of his estate. These Court actions required legal assistance and were paid out of my personal funds.

Since there is nothing in his estate, I am hoping these legal fees can be deducted from my income.

My/wife gross income $155,000
Legal expenses total: $20,000
- legal expenses for death/admin: $6,100.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Lev replied 8 years ago.

Sorry for your loss,...

Unfortunately - you may not deduct these expenses on your personal tax return. You would be able to deduct legal expeenses only in connection with taxable income. Thus these expences are not related to any taxable income you had - they are not deductible.

Please see for reference IRS publication 529 page 10 - http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p529.pdf

Sorry if that is not the answer you expected.

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