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Volume 1, No. 1 (2010)

Department of Revenue Names New Inheritance Tax Administrator

Dennis HopperDon Hopper has been named the new tax administrator for the Indiana Department of Revenue’s inheritance tax section. Hopper has more than 30 years of experience, including practicing law in Indiana and federal courts, as well as United States’ tax courts. Throughout his career he has served as chief deputy prosecutor for Montgomery County, in addition to serving as managing attorney for Legal Services of Northern Indiana. Hopper has also served as a registered mediator in private law practice, and has worked for the past three years as an audit and litigating attorney in the Indiana Department of Revenue’s inheritance tax section. Hopper’s position is appointed with the approval of Governor Mitch Daniels. For more information, you can contact him at dhopper@dor.in.gov or 317.232.2154.

Job 1: Providing Information and Assistance

One of the Department’s primary goals in serving you is to continue to develop supportive and collaborative relationships with county assessor’s offices. The Department is committed to helping you as you process inheritance tax returns and consents to transfer. Our staff wants to support you by answering your questions, whether via phone call or email, and by providing resources as you fulfill your statutory duties at the county level.

Inheritance Tax Notes
The Department also has proactively established Inheritance Tax Notes, a new quarterly newsletter published specifically to address topics relevant to county assessor’s offices.

This is the first issue of what will be a regular e-mail newsletter on inheritance tax issues that county assessors (or deputies) deal with on a consistent basis. Future topics will include appraisals (in light of recent Indiana Tax Court decisions), consents to transfer (20% retention by institutions), inheritance tax forms, and recent legislative changes (IH-EXEM and multiple IH-6s for the same decedent). The Department would also like to hear about topics you’d like to see covered. Please send your story ideas to feedback@dor.in.gov

New Subscription Service
Not only does the Department’s Web site provide a wealth of information about more than 42 tax types – including inheritance tax – but it also provides a free subscription service. With this service, you can sign up to receive automatic e-mail updates for various sections of the Department’s Web site – of your choosing. To sign up for this new service, visit us at www.in.gov/dor

The Department Needs Your Help

One of the Department’s goals is to significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to process returns. Under inheritance tax laws, the Department has only 120 days from the date of the probate court’s order determining tax to audit the IH-6, request additional information, assess any additional tax, and resolve all issues or file a petition for redetermination with the probate court. Some counties have been holding returns for 30, 60, 90 and even 120 days before sending them to the Department.

For the Department to meet its goal and comply with the 120-day statute of limitations, it needs your help. No later than Friday of each week, please send the Department all returns where you have received an order (Form IH-9) from your probate courts. Obtaining orders weekly from your courts and clerks may be difficult at times, but the Department needs your help to process returns in a timelier manner, which can avoid unnecessary litigation.

Getting returns processed within the 120-day period will help ensure that taxpayers, especially grieving families trying to move on with their lives in spite of losing loved ones, get the kind of quality service they deserve. Thanks in advance for your help with this!

Inheritance Tax Training Opportunities

A representative from the Department will be providing training on the following days in September 2010:

September 1 through 3 – Indiana Assessors Conference, Indianapolis (call 812.349.2703 or email jsharp@co.monroe.in.us for more information)

September 29 – Evansville Bar Association, Evansville, noon – 1:30 p.m. (www.evvbar.org)