August 5 being the deadline to file income tax return (ITR) for the financial year 2016-17, you have only few hours left to do that without penalty. The government has extended the deadline for filing income tax return (ITR) for financial year 2016-17 to August 5 from July 31 earlier. Yesterday, the income tax department further said its field offices will remain open till midnight today to facilitate income tax filing (ITR). You also have the option to file your income tax return online. Online filing of income tax return is very convenient and also ensures the secrecy of your personal information.
10 Things To Know About Income Tax Filing This Year:
1) Linking of the Aadhaar number with the PAN (Permanent Account Number) of a taxpayer has been made mandatory for filing of an ITR, beginning July 1. While income tax returns can now be filed by August 5, the Aadhaar-PAN linking can be done till August 31.
2) For the purpose of e-filing return, it would be sufficient as of now to quote Aadhaar or acknowledgement number for having applied for Aadhaar in the e-filing website.
3) The tax department has however cautioned that the returns (ITRs) will not be processed until the linkage of Aadhaar with PAN is done.
4) This year the tax department has also asked taxpayers to declare cash deposits made in bank accounts aggregating to Rs. 2 lakh or more, post demonetisation between November 9-December 30 last year, in their returns.
5) Experts say that tax payers should exercise caution while claiming HRA benefits. It is expected that HRA claims will be closely scrutinised henceforth considering the consistent introduction of measures during the past few years, says Sandeep Sehgal, director of tax and regulatory at Ashok Maheshwary & Associates LLP. “In fact, the chances are greater if the claim doesn’t appear in Form 16 but claimed in the return,” he adds.
6) Filing of income tax return (ITR) has changed this year with regard to the forms to be used. The Income Tax Department has prescribed new forms for filing tax returns. A simplified one-page form, called ‘ITR-1 Sahaj’, has been introduced for individuals earning income from salary, pension, one house property and income from other sources. The tax department has removed columns which are not frequently used by the taxpayers.
7) After you submit the return you need to verify it. According to the current tax laws, you can verify your return within 120 days of filing it. Once a return is e-filed, income-tax Department sends the ITR-V to the registered e-mail id. The verification can be done both offline as well as online. In the offline mode, you have to sign the ITR-V and send to the tax department. The online verification mode is easier and can be done instantly through Aadhaar OTP and internet banking modes among others.
8) It is always advisable to file your return in time. If you file beyond the August 5 deadline, you have to pay penal interest on unpaid tax liability. If the income tax department raises any additional tax demand, then also you have to pay a penal interest.
9) Even if you miss August 5 deadline of filing your return, it does not mean that you cannot file your return for FY2016-17. You can file belated return till March 2018 for financial year 2016-17. However, if you file belated return, you may not be able to avail some tax benefits like carrying forward of capital losses over next assessment years.
10) Under section 271F, the assessing officer could levy a penalty of Rs. 5,000 for belated returns (applicable for returns for FY 2016-17).