What Is Form 1310?
Form 1310 is an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) form that should be used to claim a federal tax refund due to a recently deceased taxpayer.
Who Can File Form 1310?
In general, a surviving spouse or the executor of an estate files IRS Form 1310. To become the executor, an individual must be named in the deceased’s will. In the absence of a will, a probate court will name an individual to handle the executor’s duties. This person is known as a personal representative or administrator. Probate courts vary from state to state, but they generally consider a hierarchy of candidates to serve as personal representative. This list begins with a spouse and other close relatives and continues to include more distant relatives and creditors.
How to File Form 1310
If the executor or personal representative is filing a full tax return on behalf of the deceased individual, they must submit a Form 1040 along with the Form 1310 directing the IRS to pay a refund. The executor may also need to file taxes owed by the estate rather than the individual. In this case, the representative will be required to file a Form 1041 along with a 1310 form. The 1041 form would be required only if the estate generates more than $600 in income per year. If filing a Form 1310 along with a Form 1041, the executor must be aware that the IRS will issue the refund to the estate rather than to any individual. Executors should always request a physical check rather than an electronic refund because most banks will not send money to a differently titled account without special authorization. Form 1310 asks a series of identifying questions and requests legal documentation of the taxpayer’s status and executor's appointment. First, it asks the filer of the form to explain their role and justification for requesting the refund. A surviving spouse need not submit a death certificate if they are requesting a refund check made out to both spouses. This is because a refund check would have referenced both taxpayers names prior to the spouse’s death. A personal representative must submit their court certificate in order to request a refund. In the absence of a court appointment, the filing individual must submit a copy of the death certificate and answer questions on Form 1310.
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