Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Refunds Confined to Statute of Limitations


Same-sex couples may file a refund claim for gift or estate taxes paid prior to the Supreme Court’s recent DOMA decision.  However, they should probably act now as the IRS’s relief is confined to the current three-year statute of limitations, meaning amended returns will only be accepted for the years 2010, 2011, and 2012.

A challenge to the IRS’s decision to confine relief to this three-year period is likely forthcoming.  As Florida practitioner George Karibjanian says, “If a law is unconstitutional, that means it is . . . void from the start.  It’s as if it never existed.  Shouldn’t that trump whatever statute of limitations says I can’t amend a return?”  However, the IRS may be unlikely to expand the statute of limitations, which would “open things up for a really long time.” 

See Diane Freda, Same-Sex Marriage Fight Looms Next on IRS Estate Refunds: Taxes, Bloomberg, Oct. 15, 2013.


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