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Filing for a deceased person


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My parents have been filing their tax returns together in the past, with my dad being the family head and my mom being the spouse. 
My dad passed away last year so my mother will be filing it on his behalf (she's the executor of his estate). Do we need to change my mom to be the family head?
Thank you.

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Hello jlijli,

You do not (and canot) change the Family Head.  Please see below.

You can file the return for a person who passed away in the current tax year and was the designated family head. To do so, please follow the steps below:

1. On the ''Left side menu on the Interview tab", select the "Identification" page and for the question "Did your marital status change in 2023?" reply "No change" because the deceased person does not change their marital status;.

2. Still on the "Left side menu on the Interview tab", click on "Interview setup" and on the page that appears to the right, check the box for "Tax return for a deceased person". Also, choose the group needed to complete your tax return and click on "Next" at the bottom of the page.

3. Return to the "Left side menu on the Interview tab" and click on "Deceased".

4. Complete the page with the date of death and indicate if you have filed optional returns. On the line "Information from optional returns for the purpose" indicate the amount of the optional net income; this will be used for the purpose of calculating the family income of schedules B, C and K

5. If the estate received an RC249 slip for the impairment of an RRSP or RRIF, enter the amount shown on the RC249 slip under the heading ?Post-death decline in the value? which will be generated automatically. In the spouse's file, the program will automatically generate the "Marital status change" in the "Left side menu on the Interview tab".

Enter the required information in the "Change of marital status in 2023 " mainly on the line "Change in your marital status in 2023 " in the drop down menu on your right, choose "Taxpayer became widowed" and enter the date of death of your late spouse.

Also, the program will automatically generate the widowed marital status on the federal return and for residents of Quebec, on page 1 of the Quebec return to the section "Information about your spouse December 31 2023 " will be entered on line 37 the date of the of death of the family head.

NOTE - You cannot NETFILE the CRA tax return of a deceased individual, as per CRA rules. You must print and mail it. (However, if you are a professional tax preparer, you can file the return through EFILE.)

For residents of Quebec, you can file your Quebec tax return through NetFile Québec.

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