Indiana Law for Filing Taxes for a Deceased Person

By Tom Streissguth

The old adage about the inevitability of death and taxes applies in Indiana just as it does in other states. If an income-earning resident of the state dies, he still may have a tax liability which the state will assess against his estate. A representative of the deceased must file a tax return on the decedent's behalf in accordance with state law; the forms, rules and income tax rates remain the same.

Authorized Filers

If a resident of Indiana dies, state law requires the filing of a final tax return covering the year of the taxpayer’s death. The surviving spouse must file the return on the taxpayer’s behalf; otherwise, the executor or administrator of the estate must file the return.

Filing Requirements

The filing requirements vary with the age of the deceased. For those younger than age 65, Indiana requires the filing of a tax return if the taxpayer had more than $1,000 in gross income. For those taxpayers age 65 or older, the minimum rises to $2,000. The state also mandates filing if the deceased did not live in Indiana, but still earned money from an Indiana business or employer.

Protect your loved ones. Start My Estate Plan

Tax Forms

The tax form is filled out in the usual way, with income and deductions listed and tax calculated according to net taxable income. The Indiana state tax form also has a check box if the taxpayer is deceased and requires the month and day of death for the taxpayer. The surviving spouse, executor or administrator signs the return on behalf of the deceased taxpayer, adding his capacity or relationship after the signature. The Indiana Department of Revenue may ask for a copy of the death certificate.


Any taxes due are levied against the estate of the deceased, which must pay the tax before settlement of estate. If the deceased is entitled to a refund, the state will issue the refund check in the name of the deceased. In some cases, a bank or other financial institution will not accept the check for cashing or deposit. The surviving spouse, executor or administrator of the estate then must file an affidavit with the Indiana Department of Revenue, which will then replace the check.

Tax Information

The Indiana Department of Revenue is the state agency responsible for collecting taxes and accepting tax returns. If you have questions about Indiana tax law, visit the DOR website or call the agency at 317-232-2240. For information on federal taxes, refer to "IRS Publication 559: Survivors, Executors, and Administrators."

Protect your loved ones. Start My Estate Plan
Indiana Divorce & Division of Income Tax



Related articles

How to Notify Social Security of the Death of a Beneficiary

A disabled person or retired worker may receive Social Security benefits. The money is paid monthly to the beneficiary, with the amount based on many factors, including how long the person worked. If a loved one who was receiving Social Security benefits dies, the surviving family, such as a spouse, is responsible for reporting the death to the Social Security Administration. If you fail to report the death and continue to receive the deceased's benefits, you may face legal action by the administration.

How to Title an Inherited Vehicle in Texas

A Texas resident may inherit a vehicle in a variety of ways following the death of a friend or family member. Whether a vehicle is inherited by a will, through intestacy, or by joint title, the inheritor is responsible for transferring the vehicle’s title to his own name. The heir to the vehicle must file specific documents according to state guidelines to properly transfer the vehicle’s title before beginning to use the vehicle as his own.

Time Limits on Estate Executor Duties in California

Probating a will is often an exacting job, and an executor must also be able to perform well under pressure. Deadlines for achieving tasks loom through the entire process. With small estates, this is usually no problem, but with large, complicated estates, an executor might find herself scrambling at the last minute to finalize certain duties. California's probate time limits are similar to those in other states.

LegalZoom. Legal help is here. Start Here. Wills. Trusts. Attorney help.

Related articles

What Is the Meaning of Settle Estate?

A Last Will and Testament contains instructions for the distribution of a person's assets, also referred to as the ...

California Executor Checklist

The executor is the person who manages the estate of the deceased, also known as the decedent, during the probate ...

Laws on Receiving an Inheritance

The general principle of inheritance law is that the maker of a will, known as the testator, is entitled to distribute ...

Does the Recipient Have to Pay Inheritance Tax If You Have a Transfer on Death?

When an individual passes away, those responsible for settling his estate are often faced with federal and state taxes. ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED