Die Now File Later?

Today Richard from Phoenix, AZ wants to know. “If someone dies, can the tax returns for the year in which they died be filed prior to the end of that year? Or do you have to wait till all of their tax forms for the year in which they died are received?”


Dear Richard,

Unfortunately, the tax forms for the year generally aren’t finalized and printed until the end of the year.

However, you may try to file using the most current forms and change the year at the top. Include a cover letter to explain what you’re doing and see if IRS and your state will accept it. Who knows?

At the very least, you could use estimated vouchers to pay the taxes you know will be due. Pay them as soon as possible, so you can close out the bank accounts. Then, remember to file the tax returns when the time comes.

On the other hand, it might be worth waiting until all those pesky forms come in. Funny thing about waiting for all the 1099s to come in. Sometimes, you will find there were bank or investment accounts you didn’t know about. With one Alzheimer’s client, the family found over $100,000 that way.

Naturally, you’ll find answers to all tax questions and lots of tax resources – free, where? Where else? At TaxMama.com !

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