CHAPTER 72
ESTATE TAX
72.005   Purpose.
72.01   Definitions.
72.02   Estate tax imposed.
72.03   Notice.
72.045   Timely filing.
72.06   Confidentiality of tax returns.
72.11   Subjects liable.
72.21   Personal liability.
72.22   Payment.
72.225   Installment payments; closely held businesses.
72.23   Acceleration and interest.
72.235   Failure to file.
72.24   Refunding.
72.27   Jurisdiction of circuit court.
72.30   Determination of tax.
72.33   Adjustments.
72.34   Notice of obligations.
72.35   Interstate arbitration of death taxes.
72.36   Sunset.
72.005 72.005 Purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to obtain for Wisconsin the benefit of the maximum credit allowable upon the United States estate tax, to the full extent that this state may be entitled, by imposing this tax. This chapter is to be liberally construed to effect this purpose.
72.005 History History: 1971 c. 310; 1987 a. 27 s. 1538m; Stats. 1987 s. 72.005.
72.01 72.01 Definitions. In this chapter, unless otherwise specified:
72.01(1) (1) “Administration" means any proceeding relating to a decedent's estate whether decedent died testate or intestate.
72.01(4) (4) “Circuit court" means the circuit court which has jurisdiction under s. 72.27.
72.01(6) (6) “Death tax" is a tax imposed by a state, territory or district, because of a death or gift in contemplation of death, on property or a transfer of property, and includes estate, inheritance, succession, legacy and transfer taxes.
72.01(7) (7) “Decedent" means the deceased person.
72.01(8) (8) “Department" means the department of revenue.
72.01(9) (9) “Distributee" means any person to whom property is transferred by reason of a death or in contemplation of death other than in payment of a claim.
72.01(9m) (9m) “District attorney" means the district attorney of the county whose circuit court has jurisdiction under s. 72.27.
72.01(11) (11) “Estate" means all property of a decedent transferred by reason of the decedent's death.
72.01(11m) (11m) “Federal credit" means, for deaths occurring after September 30, 2002, and before January 1, 2008, the federal estate tax credit allowed for state death taxes as computed under the federal estate tax law in effect on December 31, 2000, and for deaths occurring after December 31, 2007, the federal estate tax credit allowed for state death taxes as computed under the federal estate tax law in effect on the day of the decedent's death.
72.01(11n) (11n) “Federal estate tax" means, for deaths occurring after September 30, 2002, and before January 1, 2008, the federal estate tax as computed under the federal estate tax law in effect on December 31, 2000, and for deaths occurring after December 31, 2007, the federal estate tax as computed under the federal estate tax law in effect on the day of the decedent's death.
72.01(12m) (12m) “File" means mail or deliver a document that the department prescribes to the department or, if the department prescribes another method of submitting or another destination, use that other method or submit to that other destination.
72.01(13) (13) “The intestate laws of this state" include statutory rights and allowances to a child and to a surviving spouse and any other rights of a surviving spouse acquired by contract in lieu of any statutory rights.
72.01(14m) (14m) “Pay" means mail or deliver funds to the department or, if the department prescribes another method of submitting or another destination, use that other method or submit to that other destination.
72.01(16) (16) “Personal representative" means any person to whom letters to administer a decedent's estate have been granted by the court but does not include a special administrator.
72.01(19) (19) “Property" means any interest, legal or equitable, present or future, in real or personal property, or income therefrom, in possession and enjoyment, trust or otherwise, within or without this state.
72.01(21) (21) “Transfer" means the passing of property.
72.01 Annotation Wisconsin's New Estate Tax. Wilcox. Wis. Law. Dec. 2001.
72.01 Annotation A History of the Wisconsin Inheritance Tax, Stark, 88 MLR 947 (2005).
72.02 72.02 Estate tax imposed. An estate tax is imposed upon the transfer of all property that is subject to a federal estate tax and that has a taxable situs in this state. The tax imposed is equal to the federal credit against the federal estate tax as finally determined. If only a portion of a decedent's property has a taxable situs in this state, the tax imposed is the amount obtained by multiplying the federal credit by a fraction the numerator of which is the value of the decedent's estate that has a taxable situs in this state and the denominator of which is the total value of the property in the estate that qualifies for the federal credit.
72.02 History History: 1987 a. 27; 2001 a. 16.
72.02 Annotation The gross estate for purposes of calculating the estate tax is the taxable estate as determined under federal law. The statutes do not authorize DOR to add gifts made in contemplation of death to the federal taxable estate when calculating the estate tax. The amount of estate tax is determined by the federal credit for state death taxes provided under federal law. Any construction that results in a calculation of the estate tax that is not equal to the federal tax credit for state death taxes is inconsistent with the plain language of this section. Department of Revenue v. Estate of Schweitzer, 2008 WI App 2, 307 Wis. 2d 298, 744 N.W.2d 861, 06-0984.
72.02 Annotation Wisconsin's New Estate Tax. Wilcox. Wis. Law. Dec. 2001.
72.02 Annotation Time Runs Out on Wisconsin's Estate Tax. Reineke & Botham. Wis. Law. Dec. 2007.
72.03 72.03 Notice. Unless otherwise provided, where “notice" is required in this chapter it shall be given in the manner prescribed by s. 879.05.
72.03 History History: 1971 c. 310.
72.045 72.045 Timely filing. Documents and payments required or permitted by this chapter that are filed by mail are on time if they are mailed in a properly addressed envelope, if the postage is paid, if the envelope is postmarked before midnight of the due date and if the department or the person that the department designates receives them no later than 5 days after the due date. Documents and payments that are not mailed are timely if they are received on or before the due date by the department or at the destination that the department prescribes.
72.045 History History: 1991 a. 39; 1997 a. 27.
72.06 72.06 Confidentiality of tax returns. Sections 71.78 (1), (1m), and (4) to (9) and 71.83 (2) (a) 3. and 3m. apply to any information obtained from any person by the department on a death tax return, report, schedule, exhibit or other document or from an audit report pertaining to the tax return.
72.06 History History: 1979 c. 139, 221; 1987 a. 27; 1987 a. 312 s. 17; 2011 a. 68.
72.06 Cross-reference Cross-reference: See also ss. Tax 1.11 and 1.12, Wis. adm. code.
72.11 72.11 Subjects liable.
72.11(1)(1)Residents and nonresidents. A tax is imposed upon any transfer of property to any distributee in the following cases:
72.11(1)(a) (a) When the transfer is from a person who dies while a resident of this state.
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2015-16 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2017 Wis. Act 6 and all Supreme Court and Controlled Substances Board Orders effective on or before May 15, 2017. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after May 15, 2017 are designated by NOTES. (Published 5-15-17)