If an individual died during 2019, or died after Dec. 31, 2019, but before filing his/her tax return, the executor, administrator or surviving spouse must file a tax return for the individual if:
• The deceased was under the age of 65 and had gross income more than $1,000
• The deceased was age 65 or older and had gross income more than $2,000, or
• The deceased was a nonresident and had gross income from Indiana.
Be sure to enter the month and day of death for the taxpayer or spouse in the appropriate box located on Schedule 7. For example, a date of death of Jan. 9, 2019, would be entered as 01/09/2019.
Note. The date of death should not be entered here if the individual died after Dec. 31, 2019, but before filing the tax return. The date of death information will be shown on the individual’s 2020 tax return.
Signing the Deceased Individual’s Tax Return
If a joint return is filed by the surviving spouse, the surviving spouse should sign his or her own name and after the signature write: “Filing as Surviving Spouse.”
An executor or administrator appointed to the deceased’s estate must file and sign the return (even if this isn’t the final return), indicating their relationship after their signature (e.g. administrator). If there is no executor, or if an administrator has not been appointed, the person filing the return should sign and give their relationship to the deceased (e.g. “John Doe, nephew”). Only one tax return should be filed on behalf of the deceased.
Note. The department may ask for a copy of the death certificate, so please keep a copy with your records.
Refund Check for a Deceased Individual
If you (the surviving spouse, administrator, executor or other) have received a refund check and cannot cash it, contact the department to get a widow’s affidavit (POA-30) or a distributee’s affidavit (POA-20) at www.in.gov/dor/3508.htm. Send the completed affidavit, the refund check and a copy of the death certificate to the State Auditor’s Office so a refund check can be issued to you.