All income tax assessees-including individuals, Hindu Undivided Families (HUFs), professionals, Trusts, firms and companies-can now file their tax returns online. With a few exceptions, it is mandatory for all taxpayers to file returns online. Here are the steps to follow when you file your tax return.
Who should go for ITR e-filing
All income tax assessees need to file their returns online. However, the following can file using physical forms.
-Very senior citizens (individuals who were older than 80 years at any time during the previous year).
-Individuals or HUFs whose income was less than Rs5 lakh and who do not have to claim any refund.
You can file the online return yourself on the income tax department's e-Filing website www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.
However, if you prefer to file through the tax department's website, the process remains the same as last year. "There is no change in the process of filing ITR (online or offline).
Just like the previous assessment year, two processes are available. One is partially offline and the other is fully online (see graphic: How to e-file your return).
However, before filing, check a few things. "You should check Form 26AS and ensure that the tax deducted from your income is as per your Form 16 and matches the figures in Form 26AS," said Abhishek Soni, chief executive officer and co-founder, Tax2win.in. If you file your returns without checking for mismatches between Form 16 and Form 26AS, you could get a notice from the I-T department, he added.
Also, ensure that you mention the correct bank details so that any refund can be directly credited to the bank account. Similarly, make sure you mention the correct PAN, address, email and mobile number.
Remember that the due date for filing returns for AY2017-18 is 31 July 2017. However, don't wait for the last date.
In the past, there have been instances when the e-filing website has crashed because too many people logged on at the same time, which led to delays and failure in filing returns.
While filing your tax return, if you find that you still owe some tax to the income tax department, you can pay it online. This is considered self-assessment tax.
The tax liability could have arisen because maybe you did not consider an income while paying the final instalment of advance tax, or if nil or a lower rate of tax deducted at source (TDS) was applied on an income instead of a higher rate of tax.
Paying tax online
You can pay tax offline as well at designated branches of banks that are empanelled with the income tax department. For this, you need to fill up Challan 280. You can pay the tax either by cheque or cash. Remember to collect the challan receipts and ensure that the challan information number (CIN) along with a 7-digit BSR code of the branch and date of deposit are clearly printed, stamped or written on the acknowledgement.
To pay the tax online, go to the income tax website
www.incometaxindia.gov.in. Once you login, you will see an option to "e-Pay taxes". Click here and you will be directed to the website of National Securities Depository Ltd (NSDL). Here, select challan no./ITNS 280. You will be presented with two options; choose the option marked '(0021) Income tax (other than companies)'. Fill in details such as PAN, name, address, and contact details. Select the assessment year for which you want to pay the tax. Then, under the head 'Type of payment' select '(300) Self Assessment Tax', click on the drop-down list to choose the bank's name through which you want to pay.
Remember that online payments can be made only through Net banking and not by credit or debit cards. After clearing the captcha test, pay tax through net banking.
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