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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 118286
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Dear sir/madam recently the family of my deceased nephew

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Dear sir/madam

recently the family of my deceased nephew who passed away more than 10 years ago received a letter from income tax dept asking for payment of outstanding income tax amounting to a few hundred dollars. My questions:
1) is this right? I would expect some kind of waival?
2) what happens to the affairs and estate after the death of someone? I would expect that some kind of administration would have taken place immediately, including all assets and outstanding debts?

Kong kt
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

Generally there is a prescriptive period of 10 years for delinquent taxes, but this period does not begin to run until the government actually discovers the delinquency, so it can go on for much longer than 10 years.

Those handling the estate of a deceased are responsible for paying all final taxes and filing a final tax return. This should have been done during the administration of his estate by the administrator or executor and if the administrator/executor failed to do this you can seek to hold them liable personally for failure to properly administer the estate.

To fight this over a few hundred dollars though means hiring an attorney to pursue the matter and the relatives may find the cost is more to pursue it. The relatives should call and attempt to negotiate and explain that the person is deceased and that the executor did close the estate and see if they will waive the amount due (many times for only a couple of hundred dollars they will waive it because it costs them more to try to collect it as well).

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