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For Senior Taxpayers

Question: I exercised my rights to receive life insurance distributions before death. Are these proceeds taxable?


If you surrender a life insurance policy for cash, you must include in income any proceeds that are more than the cost of the life insurance policy. In general, your cost (or investment in the contract) is the total of premiums that you paid for the life insurance policy less any refunded premiums, rebates, dividends or loans that you neither repaid nor previously included in your income. You should receive a Form 1099-R (.pdf), Distributions From Pensions, Annuities, Retirement or Profit-Sharing Plans, IRAs, Insurance Contracts, etc., showing the gross proceeds and the taxable part. Report these amounts on lines 16a and 16b of Form 1040 (.pdf), U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, or on lines 12a and 12b of Form 1040A (.pdf), U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Category: Other (Alternative Minimum Tax, Estates, Trusts, Tax Shelters, State Tax Inquiries)
Subcategory: For Senior Taxpayers

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The OMB number for this study is 1545-1432.
If you have any comments regarding this study, please write to:
IRS, Tax Products Coordinating Committee
1111 Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20224