Should I report a cashier's check from my mother's estate on my tax return since it is an inheritance?

by Elizabeth W. Kidd, CPA | Feb 21, 2018
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I received a cashier’s check from my mother’s estate for $81,000. No 1099 or other tax form is provided. This is an inheritance I received after all her assets were resolved. Do I report this for taxes as it is an inheritance? If so, how?

Amounts received as inheritances are not income to be reported on a personal income tax return to the extent that the amount represents distribution of assets held at death. If the amount includes any interest earned on the date of death balances, the amount of that interest would be reportable on your income tax return. If income is earned in the estate before distribution, the executor would file a fiduciary income tax return.
 
If that income is distributed, you would receive a K-1 from the estate. Check with the executor or attorney for the estate to determine if your distribution includes taxable amounts and ask when you will receive the K-1.
 
Be aware that estates do not always use calendar years, which can affect when you might have to report any taxable distributions.

For more resources, check out PICPA’s Money & Life Tips, Ask a CPA, or CPA Locator.

Answered by: Elizabeth W. Kidd, CPA, is a retired accounting instructor in Erie, Pa.

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