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July 2017

Guidance on Simplified Method to Make a Late Portability Election

By Julie Dale, CPA-Austin


Revenue Procedure 2017-34 provides a simplified method for certain taxpayers to obtain an extension of time under Section 301.9100-3 of the Procedure and Administration Regulations to make a portability election under Section 2010(c)(5)(A) of the Internal Revenue Code. A portability election allows a decedent’s unused exclusion amount to become available for application to the surviving spouse’s subsequent transfers during life or at death. This election applies to estates of decedents dying after Dec. 31, 2010, if such decedent is survived by a spouse. The simplified method provided in this revenue procedure is to be used in lieu of the letter ruling process. A person permitted to make the election on behalf of the estate of a decedent must file a complete and properly prepared Form 706, United States Estate (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return, on or before the later of Jan. 2, 2018, or the second annual anniversary of the decedent’s date of death. The executor filing the Form 706 on behalf of the decedent’s estate must state at the top of the Form 706 that the return is “FILED PURSUANT TO REV. PROC. 2017-34 TO ELECT PORTABILITY UNDER § 2010(c)(5)(A).”