United States v. McNicol, No. 15-2214 (1st Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
When the decedent in this case died he owed over $340,000 in unpaid federal income tax liabilities. The decedent was survived by his wife, Appellant, and four minor children. Appellant, the decedent’s wife, was appointed executrix of the decedent’s estate. When Appellant told the IRS she was not cooperate with the IRS’s attempt to collect on the estate’s federal tax debts, the IRS served Appellant with a formal notice of potential liability under the federal priority statute, 31 U.S.C. 3713. The government then sued the decedent’s estate and Appellant, both individually and in her capacity as executrix. The district court concluded that Appellant was personally liable for the value of the estate’s assets Appellant transferred to herself without first paying the estate’s federal tax debts. The district court then entered judgment holding that estate and Appellant as executrix liable for $351,218 and holding Appellant, individually, liable for $125,938. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that the district court did not err in entering summary judgment against Appellant personally, as the government showed that Appellant’s conduct satisfied the requirements of section 3713(b) to be held personally liable for amounts not paid to the United States.