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Deadline to file the Income tax return

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Recently, the government notified the income tax return (ITR) forms for financial year (FY) 2018-19. The year following the financial year in which income earned by a person is assessed is referred as assessment year (AY). This is the year in which you file your ITR for the financial year gone by. For instance, for the financial year 2018-19, the AY is 2019-20.There are various different categories to file ITR of taxpayers.

For individuals, Hindu Undivided Families (HUF) and the taxpayers whose accounts are not required to be audited, the deadline to file the ITR for the FY 2018-19 is July 31, 2019. For other categories such as companies and working partners of a firm, the deadline of July 31, 2019 does not apply. Deadlines for various categories of taxpayers are as follows:

  1. Due date of filing returns of all individuals / assesses whose accounts are not required to be audited (Individuals, HUFs, Association of Person, Body of Individuals ) is July 31 of the relevant assessment year
  2. September 30, 2019 of the relevant assessment year is the deadline for below persons whose accounts are required to be audited:
  • A company
  • An individual or other entity whose accounts are required to be audited (like proprietorship, firm etc.)
  • A working partner of a firm
  1. An assesse whose is required to furnish report under section 92E should file return on November 30 of the relevant assessment year. (Report under section 92E is submitted when a taxpayer has undertaken international transactions during the relevant financial year).

Missing the deadline
On missing the ITR filing deadline of July 31, 2019, individuals can still file the return which is termed as belated ITR. The last date to file belated ITR for FY 2018-19 is March 31, 2020. On missing the deadline as well, the person will not be able to file ITR unless you receive a notice from tax department to do the same. Though there is an option to file belated ITR till March 31, it is required to avoid filing it late because late filing fees will be levied for if ITR is filed after July 31, 2019 and any time before March 31, 2019.

Late filing penalties
For filing the ITR post the deadline was announced in Budget 2017 and came into effect from the AY 2018-19, for the tax returns filed for FY 2017-18. Prior to this, it was the sole discretion of the assessing officer to levy penalty if the individual failed to file tax return before the end of the relevant assessment year. Section 234F introduced in the Income Tax Act made late filing mandatory.

The late filing fees structure is mentioned below:

Date of filing ITR Amount (INR)
After July 31 but on or before December 31 5,000
Between January 1 and March 31 10,000

For small taxpayers whose total income does not exceed INR 5 lakh, the maximum late fee amount will not exceed INR 1,000 irrespective of when it is filed, i.e., before March 31. If an individual’s gross total income does not exceed the basic exemption limit, then he/she will not be liable to pay late filing fees if he/she files belated ITR. As per the current income tax laws, the basic exemption limit is as follows:

  • 1. For below 60 years, basic exemption limit is INR 2,50,000
  • 2. For 60 years or more but below 80 years (senior citizen), it is INR 3,00,000
  • 3. For 80 years and above, INR 5,00,000 is the limit

However, if you have some unpaid tax liability, then penal interest on the same would be leviable, as applicable to your case, in case you have filed a belated return. But if no tax is payable, the taxpayer won’t be liable to pay this interest solely due to the belated filing of ITR for FY17-18. If the income tax department, upon assessing your return, raises demand for additional tax payment then you would have to pay penal interest on that tax as well as the additional tax. Therefore, it is recommended to file your return. If a resident individual has income from foreign assets and he files belated ITR, then late filing fee will be levied even if gross total income does not exceed the tax exemption limit.

The above are some of the deadline in ITR filing which leads to a tax notice. If you would like to know more about income tax updates and its impact assessment on your company, our team of experts can assist you. We can assist you in filing your ITRs, tax structuring, transfer pricing certification / documentation, international taxation and withholding tax treaty issues and representation for your tax assessments.

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