How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Damien Bosco Your Own Question
Damien Bosco
Damien Bosco, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 2563
Experience:  Helping you with your legal questions.
Type Your Estate Law Question Here...
Damien Bosco is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My mother passed away November 2015. She had a living trust.

Customer Question

Hi. My mother passed away November 2015. She had a living trust. We found out she did not file an income tax return for 2014 and my sister did not do one for 2015. Meanwhile, we got a notice from IRS they received a tax payment for 2014 ($750) but never got a filed tax return for 2014. So we need to go back and try and file a return for her for 2014 and 2015? Would be nearly impossible as we have no records. She was unemployed but had a couple small investment accounts and a house. Thanks.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Damien Bosco replied 9 months ago.

Hello. My name is***** am an attorney. I will review your question. I may need to clarify facts first. I will answer & we can discuss issues.

Expert:  Damien Bosco replied 9 months ago.

I am not quite sure what the issue is if she had limited income. I understand you say she has no records. Not sure why that is so. If you do not know the moneys she received for social security, or governmental benefits, the executor can inquiry from those agencies. We can discuss more if you want to do so.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
My sister has some limited number of statements and we know her social security. I guess what I'm getting st is we are talking about small amounts of social security and little to no investment earning. House appreciation of about $100k. If we do nothing, can the IRS come after my sister for my mom's past taxes,if she were to have owed anything. Everything in estate went to my sister via the trust
Expert:  Damien Bosco replied 9 months ago.

Hello Dave: Thanks for the additional information. The IRS could always sue the estate. Below is what the IRS says. I am afraid there is no way around it even for a small amount of income; luckily there are simpler forms; and really, is it worth getting on the wrong side of the IRS for such a minor annoyance of filing the proper returns. The IRS would always have the option to make this one an example case.

In general, the final individual income tax return of a decedent is prepared and filed in the same manner as when they were alive. All income up to the date of death must be reported and all credits and deductions to which the decedent is entitled may be claimed. File the return using Form 1040 or, if the decedent qualifies, one of the simpler forms in the 1040 series (Forms 1040-A or 1040-EZ).

If the decedent has not done so, you may also have to file individual income tax returns for years preceding the year of death. From IRS correspondence you find in their personal records, you may learn that the decedent has not filed required returns. You may also obtain verification of non-filing and certain income documents of the decedent from the IRS using IRS Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return.

Expert:  Damien Bosco replied 9 months ago.

Hi Dave: I know my answer was not exactly what you wanted to hear. But is it better to know what is expected in this situation. I hope that I have provided excellent service. If you are satisfied with your answer, please provide a positive rating between 3 and 5 stars for the service I provided to you. Best regards. If you have a follow up question, just let me know.