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Taxes on Wrongful Death Settlement

Los Angeles, CA |

Once you are getting settlements on a wrongful death settlement do you have to pay taxes. I have heard several different things on this issue. The settle ment would come from a state which I do not live in.

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Attorney answers 3


You may wish to consult with a tax professional. In personal injury the portion of the settlement that replaces wage or income losses are taxable but the rest is not (i.e. medical bills, out of pocket expenses and pain and suffering. )

I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.


You should consult with a tax attorney in your area. Try the AVVO attorney search.

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I would suggest a CPA over a tax attorney. Most damage are not taxed. However, certain exceptions, most notably punitive damages, are exceptions. While the estate will be taxed (if any), the heirs will not be taxed directly unless they take distributions before reporting any required amount to the IRS and California Department of Revenue.

Matthew Johnson phone# 206.747.0313 is licensed in the State of Washington and performs bankruptcy, short sale negotiations, and estate planning in Whatcom, Skagit, Snohomish, King and Pierce counties. The response does not constitute specific legal advice, which would require a full inquiry by the attorney into the complete background of the facts and circumstances surrounding this matter; rather, it is intended to be general legal information based on the limited information provided by the inquirer; it This response also does not constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship, which can only be established after a conflict of interest evaluation is completed, your case is accepted, and a fee agreement is signed. Johnson Legal Group, PLLC

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