Estate Basis Consistency Rules for Fiduciaries: Navigating Reporting Requirements and Distribution Strategies

Avoiding Penalties, Determining Impact of Disclosure Rules on Estate and Beneficiaries, and Making Post-Mortem Basis Adjustments

Note: CPE credit is not offered on this program

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

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Conducted on Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Recorded event now available

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Course Materials

This CLE course will provide estate planners and advisers to trusts and estates with a practical guide to estate basis consistency reporting requirements as they impact trustees and fiduciaries. The panel will explain the IRS pronouncements on coordinating basis reporting with the filing of the estate tax return and valuations reported on new Form 8971, and will offer strategies to help fiduciaries avoid adverse tax consequences in estate distributions.


The basis consistency initiatives present challenges to tax compliance advisers, fiduciaries and estate counsel. The rules create filing obligations for executors of taxable estates but will also impact distribution decisions and litigation strategies. Estate planners must grasp the wide-ranging impact of these provisions to avoid unnecessary tax and penalties.

Two statutes enacted in 2015 set the guidelines for the basis consistency regime. IRC Section 1014(f) mandates that an asset's reported estate tax value and the basis of the asset when acquired by the estate beneficiary must be consistent. IRC 6035 requires estate executors to identify the value of property reported on the estate tax return to both the IRS and the estate beneficiaries.

The requirement to furnish basis information to all beneficiaries creates a substantial burden on fiduciaries. Additionally, the mandate to match basis on assets between the Form 706 and the beneficiaries' tax returns complicates determining and making distributions. Executors will have to balance the tax situations of the beneficiaries with the needs of the estate in distributing property.

Listen as our experienced panel provides a comprehensive and practical guide to the estate basis consistency rules as they impact executors and estate planners.



  1. Section 1014 basis consistency rules
    1. Estates subject to basis consistency
    2. Property subject to basis rule
    3. Final value determination methods
    4. Zero-basis rule and other tax consequences due to omission or non-reporting
  2. Section 6035 reporting requirements
  3. Supplemental reporting requirements
  4. Impact of new rules on beneficiaries
  5. Distribution considerations and strategies


The panel will review these and other relevant topics:

  • Reporting property on Form 8971
  • Coping with scenarios in which the executor does not wish to disclose asset basis values to a particular beneficiary
  • The impact of the new rules on post-mortem basis adjustments to estate assets
  • Penalties for failure to disclose all assets on Form 8971 and Schedule A
  • How fiduciaries should remedy reporting mistakes or failures
  • Distribution concerns and strategies under the new basis consistency reporting rules


Read, Rodney
Rodney W. Read

Baker McKenzie

Mr. Read’s practice focuses on wealth management, pre-immigration planning, international estate planning and...  |  Read More

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