Unfortunately, dying has become a complicated tax issue. I wish it were not the case, but you need to be informed and understand the tax issues when a loved one passes away. You also need to have things in order for your beneficiaries. Here are some very basic bits of information to help you get started in properly preparing an Estate and/or Trust and/or Will, etc.
Please seek compentent advice and work with a qualified Estate Attorney to have documents properly drafted, and your wishes enforced when you may not be around to tell everyone.
ESTATE AND TRUST TAX ISSUES
Death of a Taxpayer
Estate Planning, Wills, Probate and Transfer of Assets
Estate Tax Form 706
Personal Representatives - Estates