I see that for this year and next year, the gross estate tax exclusion amount is $2,000,000, where amounts over this are taxed at a rate of 45%. Just out of curiosity, if one inherits stock when the decedent dies of say for example a value of $50,000,000. Before you sell it, the stock goes to zero, still leaving you with $21.6 million in estate taxes to pay, since your cost basis in inherited stock is the market value on the day the decedent died. Assuming you inherited nothing else, what happens in this case where you are now unable to pay the 21.6 million since the stock went to zero? What does the IRS do? I assume there is no maximum amount that one can pay in estate taxes?