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In order to prepare a 1040 for the year in which death occurred and subsequently, the 1041, you will have to gather information on income and deductions. Many times the personal representative of the estate does not have this information at hand. It is up to you to "hunt out" this information. There are several ways in which this can be accomplished:

1. Past income tax and/or gift tax returns. This would also include past tax returns for pre-deceased spouses or parents.

2. Brokerage and bank account statements

3. Check registers, safe deposit boxes, miscellaneous receipts, and mortgage documents

4. Real estate closing statements may be a source of information for capital items and administrative expenses.

5. Medical claim forms

6. The inventory and/or appraisals for the estate

7. Look to Series E, EE and H bonds which have an element of income to consider

8. IRS Form 712 provided by insurance companies with regard to interest held on insurance on the surviving spouse’s life.

The 1040 is due on April 15 of the year following death. Any unfiled 1040 for a prior period or other open year will have a due date of April 15 of the year following the end of the year or within statutory limitations.

Gift tax return deadlines are similar: April 15 of the year following the gift for any unfiled previous year returns in which the taxable gift was given. For taxable gifts in the year of death, the return is due no later than the due date of the federal estate tax return #706 (if applicable) or April 15 of the following year if no #706 is required.

Fiduciary income tax returns - #1041-are due as follows: for an estate - the 15th day of the 4th month after the fiscal year end. The beginning date for the first fiduciary return will be the date of death.

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