Death in the family and you’ve been named the administrator of the estate. Are you required to file an estate tax return?
If the decedent is a U.S. citizen or resident and decedent's death occurred in 2016, an estate tax return (Form 706) must be filed if the gross estate of the decedent, increased by the decedent's adjusted taxable gifts and specific gift tax exemption, is valued at more than the filing threshold for the year of the decedent's death. The filing threshold for 2018 is $11,180,000, 2017 is $5,490,000, for 2016 is $5,450,000, for 2015 is $5,430,000, for 2014 is $5,340,000, for 2013 is $5,250,000, for 2012 is $5,120,000, and for 2011 is $5,000,000.
An estate tax return also must be filed if the estate elects to transfer any deceased spousal unused exclusion (DSUE) amount to a surviving spouse, regardless of the size of the gross estate or amount of adjusted taxable gifts. The election to transfer a DSUE amount to a surviving spouse is known as the portability election.
An estate tax return may need to be filed for a decedent who was a nonresident and not a U.S. citizen if the decedent had U.S.-situated assets. Refer to Some Nonresidents with U.S. Assets Must File Estate Tax Returns to learn more.
For more information click here: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/frequently-asked-questions-on-estate-taxes#amirequired