Treatment of Property after Owner dies
When a person dies, the assets that make up their estate can:
- pass straight to a beneficiary (or beneficiaries), or
- pass straight to their legal personal representative (for example, their executor) who may dispose of the assets or pass them to the recipient, or beneficiary.
A beneficiary is a person entitled to assets of a deceased estate. They can be named as a beneficiary in a will or they can be permitted to the assets as a result of the laws of intestacy (when a person dies without having made a will).
A legal personal representative can be either:
- the executor of a deceased estate (that is, a person appointed to wind up the estate in accordance with the will)
- an administrator selected to wind up the estate if the person does not leave a will.
Date of Acquisition
If you acquire an asset own by a deceased person as their official personal representative or beneficiary, you are taken to have acquired the asset on the day the person died. If that was before 20 September 1985, you disregard any capital gain or capital loss you make from the asset.
Disregarding Capital Gain or Loss on Death
capital gains tax (CGT applies to any change of ownership of a CGT asset, unless the asset was acquired before 20 September 1985 (pre-CGT).
There is a special rule that allows any capital gain or capital loss made on a post-CGT asset to be disregarded if, when a person dies, an asset they owned passes either:
- to their legal personal representative or to a beneficiary
- from their legal personal representative to a beneficiary.
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