House Bill No. 8002
               House Bill No. 8002

   June 18 Special Session, PUBLIC ACT NO. 97-3


AN   ACT   CONCERNING   CERTAIN   CHANGES  TO  THE
ADMINISTRATION OF THE SUCCESSION TAX.

    Be  it  enacted  by  the  Senate  and House of
Representatives in General Assembly convened:
    Section  1.  Section  12-358  of  the  general
statutes  is  repealed  and   the   following   is
substituted in lieu thereof:
    Clerks  of probate courts shall report monthly
to  the  Commissioner  of  Revenue  Services   all
letters  testamentary or of administration granted
upon estates of decedents in such courts on  forms
provided  by  him  for that purpose and containing
such information as he  may  require.  They  shall
also   furnish   [monthly]  to  the  commissioner,
without charge, a certified  copy  of  every  will
admitted  to  probate WHEN THEY FORWARD THE RETURN
PROVIDED FOR IN SECTION 12-359 FOR THE  ESTATE  TO
WHICH  SUCH  WILL  PERTAINS  and,  on  his written
request, such certified copies of  any  papers  on
file  in  such courts pertaining to any decedent's
estate as he may deem necessary to the performance
of his duties.
    Sec.   2.   Section   12-364  of  the  general
statutes  is  repealed  and   the   following   is
substituted in lieu thereof:
    Any  person  shall,  if  the  Commissioner  of
Revenue Services finds, upon evidence satisfactory
to  him,  that  a  joint  tenant  of real property
situated in this  state  has  died  and  that  the
payment  of any succession tax with respect to the
interest of such deceased  joint  tenant  in  such
real  property  is  adequately assured, or that no
succession  tax  will  become  due  therefrom,  be
entitled  to  a  certificate  of  release  of lien
reciting that the Commissioner of Revenue Services
has released such real property from the operation
of any lien for succession taxes with  respect  to
the interest of such deceased joint tenant in such
real property WHICH SHALL BE CONCLUSIVE PROOF THAT
SUCH  REAL  PROPERTY  HAS  BEEN  RELEASED FROM THE
OPERATION  OF  SUCH  LIEN.  Such  certificate   of
release of lien may be [filed in any probate court
in  this  state  and  shall  thereupon  constitute
conclusive  proof  to  such  court  that such real
property has been released from the  operation  of
such  lien]  RECORDED  IN  THE  OFFICE OF THE TOWN
CLERK OF THE TOWN IN WHICH SUCH REAL  PROPERTY  IS
SITUATED.   A  finding  by  the  [Commissioner  of
Revenue Services] COMMISSIONER that the payment of
such tax is adequately assured shall be based upon
the  receipt  by  the  [Commissioner  of   Revenue
Services] COMMISSIONER of a bond or other security
for an amount and with surety satisfactory to him,
conditioned   upon   the   full   payment  of  all
succession taxes with respect to the gross taxable
estate  of  such deceased joint tenant or upon the
payment to the [Commissioner of Revenue  Services]
COMMISSIONER  of  an amount satisfactory to him on
account of such tax or upon  the  finding  by  the
[Commissioner  of  Revenue  Services] COMMISSIONER
that an executor or administrator of the estate of
such deceased joint tenant has been duly appointed
in this state and that the official bond  of  such
administrator    or    executor,   or,   if   such
administrator or executor is  a  corporation,  its
financial   responsibility,   furnishes   adequate
protection  for  the  payment  of  all  succession
taxes.  THE COMMISSIONER MAY ADOPT REGULATIONS, IN
ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF CHAPTER 54, THAT
PRESCRIBE THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH A JUDGE OF
THE PROBATE  COURT  HAVING  JURISDICTION  OF  SUCH
ESTATE  IS  PERMITTED  TO  ISSUE  A CERTIFICATE OF
RELEASE OF LIEN, BASED ON A FINDING BY SAID  JUDGE
THAT PAYMENT OF ANY SUCCESSION TAX WITH RESPECT TO
THE INTEREST OF A DECEASED JOINT  TENANT  IN  REAL
PROPERTY   IS   ADEQUATELY   ASSURED  OR  THAT  NO
SUCCESSION TAX WILL BECOME DUE FROM SUCH PROPERTY.
    Sec.   3.   Section   12-366  of  the  general
statutes  is  repealed  and   the   following   is
substituted in lieu thereof:
    The  tax  herein  imposed  shall  be a lien in
favor of the state of Connecticut  upon  the  real
property  so passing from the due date until paid,
with the interest and costs  that  may  accrue  in
addition  thereto; provided such lien shall not be
valid as against any lienor,  mortgagee,  judgment
creditor or bona fide purchaser provided they have
no notice, unless and until notice of such lien is
filed  or  recorded  in the town clerk's office or
place where mortgages, liens  and  conveyances  of
such  property are required by statute to be filed
or recorded.  The  lien  upon  any  real  property
transferred,   or   a   portion  thereof,  may  be
discharged by the payment of such  amount  as  tax
thereon  as  the  commissioner OF REVENUE SERVICES
may specify or by the giving to  the  commissioner
of  a  bond  for such amount; or the commissioner,
upon application by the  fiduciary,  may  make  an
order   transferring   such  lien  to  other  real
property of the estate or of the transferee, which
order  of transfer shall be recorded as above. Any
person shall be entitled to a certificate that the
tax  upon  the  transfer  of any real property has
been paid, and such certificate may be recorded in
the  office  of  the town clerk of the town within
which such real property is situated, and it shall
be  conclusive  proof that the tax on the transfer
of such real property has been paid and such  lien
discharged.  [The  commissioner  shall  furnish on
request a certificate to any corporation  that  no
tax  lien  attaches  to  any  intangible  personal
property under the provisions  of  this  section.]
THE   COMMISSIONER   MAY   ADOPT   REGULATIONS  IN
ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF CHAPTER 54  THAT
PRESCRIBE THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH A JUDGE OF
THE PROBATE COURT HAVING JURISDICTION OF AN ESTATE
IS PERMITTED TO DISCHARGE A LIEN BY THE PAYMENT OF
SUCH AMOUNT AS TAX ON SUCH REAL  PROPERTY  AS  THE
JUDGE MAY SPECIFY.
    Sec.   4.   Section   12-378  of  the  general
statutes  is  repealed  and   the   following   is
substituted in lieu thereof:
    (a)  IN  EACH  CASE  IN WHICH THE JUDGE OF THE
PROBATE COURT HAVING JURISDICTION OF THE ESTATE OF
A  DECEASED PERSON BELIEVES THAT THE ESTATE IS NOT
SUBJECT TO TAX  UNDER  THIS  CHAPTER,  SUCH  JUDGE
SHALL  SEND  A WRITTEN OPINION TO THE COMMISSIONER
OF REVENUE SERVICES, WITH  THE  COPY  OF  THE  TAX
RETURN  PROVIDED  FOR  IN  SECTION 12-359, SETTING
FORTH THE JUDGE'S REASONS FOR SUCH OPINION.  SIXTY
DAYS  AFTER  THE  DATE  ON  WHICH  SUCH OPINION IS
FILED, THE OPINION SHALL  BE  CONCLUSIVE  EVIDENCE
THAT  ALL  REAL  PROPERTY  INCLUDED  IN  THE GROSS
TAXABLE ESTATE IS FREE FROM ANY CLAIM FOR TAX  DUE
THE  STATE  UNDER  THIS  CHAPTER IN RESPECT TO THE
INTEREST OF SUCH  DECEASED  PERSON  IN  SUCH  REAL
PROPERTY,  AND THAT NO TAX IS DUE FROM THE ESTATE,
UNLESS, (1) ON OR BEFORE THE  SIXTIETH  DAY  AFTER
THE  FILING  OF SUCH OPINION, THE COMMISSIONER HAS
FILED AN OBJECTION TO  SUCH  OPINION  OR  (2)  THE
APPRAISED VALUE OR THE EXTENT OF TAXABILITY OF ANY
ITEM IS INCREASED OR PROPERTY VALUED AT MORE  THAN
ONE  THOUSAND  DOLLARS  IS  DISCOVERED  AFTER SUCH
OPINION. THE  PROBATE  COURT  MAY,  AT  ANY  TIME,
CORRECT  AN  ERROR  OR  MISTAKE IN THE OPINION. IF
SAID JUDGE HAS FILED AN OPINION THAT NO TAX IS DUE
FROM  AN  ESTATE  AND  THE COMMISSIONER OF REVENUE
SERVICES  HAS  NOT  FILED  AN  OBJECTION  TO  SUCH
OPINION  ON  OR  BEFORE THE SIXTIETH DAY AFTER THE
FILING OF SUCH OPINION, SAID JUDGE SHALL  ISSUE  A
CERTIFICATE   RECITING  THAT  NO  TAX  UNDER  THIS
CHAPTER IS DUE FROM THE  ESTATE,  WHICH  SHALL  BE
CONCLUSIVE  PROOF  THAT  ANY LIEN ON SUCH PROPERTY
UNDER SECTION 12-366, AS AMENDED BY SECTION  3  OF
THIS ACT, OR SECTION 12-364, AS AMENDED BY SECTION
2 OF THIS ACT, IS DISCHARGED. SUCH CERTIFICATE MAY
BE RECORDED IN THE OFFICE OF THE TOWN CLERK OF THE
TOWN IN WHICH THE REAL PROPERTY IS SITUATED.
    (b)   The  Commissioner  of  Revenue  Services
shall issue receipts in duplicate  for  all  taxes
paid  or,  if  no  tax is found due, a certificate
that no tax is due, BUT SHALL NOT BE  REQUIRED  TO
ISSUE  A CERTIFICATE THAT NO TAX IS DUE WHENEVER A
JUDGE OF THE PROBATE COURT HAVING JURISDICTION  OF
THE  ESTATE OF A DECEASED PERSON ISSUES AN OPINION
AS PROVIDED IN SUBSECTION (a) OF THIS SECTION, AND
THE  COMMISSIONER  HAS  NOT  FILED AN OBJECTION TO
SUCH OPINION. A copy of the final  receipt  or  OF
such certificate, IF ANY, THAT THE COMMISSIONER IS
REQUIRED TO PROVIDE UNDER  THIS  SUBSECTION,  with
the  amount  of  the  gross  taxable  estate shown
thereon, shall be filed with the probate court and
sent   to  the  fiduciary  or  transferee  and  no
representative of an estate shall be entitled to a
final accounting unless such final receipt or SUCH
certificate, IF ANY,  THAT  SAID  COMMISSIONER  IS
REQUIRED  TO  PROVIDE  UNDER  THIS SUBSECTION, has
been filed with  the  probate  court.  Such  final
receipt  filed  with  the  probate  court shall be
conclusive  evidence  that   all   real   property
included  in  [the inventory of] the GROSS TAXABLE
estate is free from any claim for [succession] tax
due the state UNDER THIS CHAPTER in respect to the
interest of [the] SUCH  deceased  PERSON  in  such
real property.
    Sec.  5.  Subsection  (a) of section 12-382 of
the general statutes is repealed and the following
is substituted in lieu thereof:
    (a)  Subject  to the provisions of subsections
(b) and (c) of this  section,  any  person,  firm,
corporation  or  association  which,  without  the
consent of the commissioner,  transfers,  pays  or
delivers,  or  permits  the  transfer,  payment or
delivery of, any property, the transfer  of  which
is subject to the tax imposed by the provisions of
this chapter, SHALL, if no administration has been
granted  BY  A  PROBATE  COURT  OF  THIS STATE, as
provided  by  law,  and  if  such  person,   firm,
corporation or association has actual knowledge of
the death of the transferor, [shall] be liable  to
a  penalty  of three times the amount of tax found
to be due under the provisions of this chapter, to
be  recovered in an action brought by the Attorney
General. THE COMMISSIONER MAY  ADOPT  REGULATIONS,
IN  ACCORDANCE  WITH THE PROVISIONS OF CHAPTER 54,
THAT PRESCRIBE THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER  WHICH  THE
TRANSFER,  PAYMENT  OR DELIVERY OF ANY PROPERTY IS
PERMITTED   WITHOUT   THE    CONSENT    OF    SAID
COMMISSIONER,  AND  THE FORMS AND SUCH INFORMATION
TO BE CONTAINED IN SUCH FORMS AS THE  COMMISSIONER
MAY  REQUIRE  TO  BE  FILED IN ORDER TO OBTAIN THE
CONSENT OF THE COMMISSIONER.
    Sec.   6.   Section  45a-345  of  the  general
statutes  is  repealed  and   the   following   is
substituted in lieu thereof:
    Any  judge  of  probate is authorized to waive
the  requirements  of  sections  45a-341  [,]  AND
45a-343  [and  45a-344]  for estates coming within
the provisions of sections 4a-15 and 4a-16.
    Sec.   7.   Section  45a-344  of  the  general
statutes is repealed.
    Sec.  8. This act shall take effect January 1,
1998.

Approved June 30, 1997