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For all persons, INCTRST reports the total net gain or loss amount they received from estates, trusts, partnerships, S corporations, rent, and royalties. Using the reported income information, annual income amounts were then edited and imputed for every record on the full-year file. Please refer to the IPUMS user note on Income Data in MEPS for more information on the collection, editing (including top- and bottom-coding), and imputation of income variables in MEPS, as well as changes to the target population for income data collection over time. Users may also be interested in the data quality flag, QINCTRST, which reports the editing methods used for INCTRST.

If respondents needed more information about what kinds of income to report as estate or trust, partnership, S corporation, rental, or royalty income, they were provided with the additional guidance: "Gains and losses from these sources are calculated on Schedule E.

Include income that was the beneficiaries' share of fiduciary income from any estate or trust, for example, income required to be distributed, amounts credited to beneficiaries' accounts from fiduciary income, and any 'accumulation distribution' made by the fiduciary of a 'complex trust' for income accumulated in prior tax years.

Since partnerships and S corporations are not taxable entities, their net profit or loss is taxed, in general, directly to the members of the partnership or shareholders in the S corporation. This income includes the taxpayer's share of the ordinary gain or loss of the enterprise and certain payments made to the taxpayer for the use of capital or as a salary.

Income or loss less amounts for depreciation, repairs, improvements and other allowable expenses related to the rented property.

Income from oil, gas and other mineral rights, patents, and literary, musical or artistic works."

Information on the IPUMS defined-universe for this variable 

Users may wish to note that, while IPUMS defines the universe for this variable as all persons, certain persons were explicitly targeted to answer questions about specific income sources. In addition to the target population of persons who were asked specifically about estate or trust, partnership, S corporation, rental, or royalty income, all persons in the household were eligible to list additional income from "other" sources, which includes income from sources previously asked about in the survey (such as those included in INCTRST). It is unclear if the types of income included in INCTRST were reported as an "other" income source is counted in INCTRST or as "other" income. Because all persons could technically report these sources of income via the "other" income questionnaire item, IPUMS staff report the universe for INCTRST as being "All Persons." Users may also wish to note that in the original public use MEPS data files, no income variables have cases explicitly coded as out of universe; both persons who directly report earning zero dollars of income from a source and persons who are not explicitly asked about that income source have values of zero.


INCTRST is a 9-digit numeric variable with 2 implied decimals. That is, values of 012345678 should be interpreted as 123456.78. The command files delivered with IPUMS extracts automatically divide INCTRST by 100, so no further adjustment is needed.

9999999.96: Not in Universe
9999999.97: Unknown-refused
9999999.98: Unknown-not ascertained
9999999.99: Unknown-don't know


While all persons could report estate or trust, partnership, S corporation, rental, or royalty income regardless of age and tax filing status if they reported it as an "other" income source, certain persons were explicitly asked questions about these types of income. The persons specifically targeted to answer these questions changes over time, with an expansion of the target population beginning in 2002. For more information on how income data were collected by MEPS and changes to the target population for these questions over time, please see the IPUMS user note on Income Data in MEPS.

Beginning to 1999, persons could only report income in full dollar amounts. Prior to 1999, persons could report income in dollars and cents.


  • 1996-2019: All persons.


  • 1996-2019