Only a tiny number of estates owed any estate tax at all in 2012, due to an individual exemption of $5 million — up from $675,000 just 12 years earlier. But that doesn’t mean the IRS ignored the returns.

Taxpayers filed 9,404 returns in 2012 for estates worth less than $5 million, that year’s individual exemption. The IRS audited 1,362 of those returns — a 14.5% audit rate — and recommended collecting an average additional tax of $85,718 per return.

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