A friend's father died last year and before he died he sold stock and took money out of his 401K He never paid the taxes and now the state of california is trying to collect from my friend. Can the son be held responsible for the taxes of his father?
Yes. When father died he should have filed a final tax return and the father's estate should have paid the taxes. If the son took the proceeds of the father's estate he would also have to pay the father's taxes.
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Robert J. Suhajda, MS,CPA
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Former financial auditor and controller. Admitted to US Tax Court, Income Tax, IRS representation, Fiduciary income tax returns, Estate and Gift tax returns,
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The primary responsibility falls on his father's estate. If there are funds there to pay the tax then his estate must pay it. If the funds have been distributed then the distributees will be responsible for paying the tax bill.
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