The inheritance tax rate in North Carolina is 16 percent at the most, according to Nolo. A surviving spouse is the only person exempt from paying this tax. .
Items included in the deceased person's taxable estate include real estate, vehicles and the proceeds from life insurance policies, explains Nolo. Bank accounts, certificates of deposit and investment accounts are also listed as taxable items. Business interests are also included, such as sole proprietorships, limited liability companies and small corporations. The executor must file an A-101 form to file the taxes. This must be done nine months after the date of death.