Top 10 Things to do By 31st March for a Solid Financial Year Endgame
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To Do List for a Solid Financial Year Endgame

Avengers Endgame – the most awaited movie of the year so far is coming soon! I am pretty sure that the team Avengers is ready with a solid endgame to take down Thanos. But are you ready for the end of FY 2018-19? You just have 5 days to face it and complete all your necessary tax-related tasks. So, here is a to-do list to solidify your financial year’s endgame.

1. Make Tax Saving Investments

Check your Form 12BB, the one that you had submitted to your employer at the beginning of the FY. If you made tall promises in the Form about making various tax saving investments but failed to make good of it, then this is your final chance to set things right. Invest in the tax-friendly investment schemes under section 80C to avail deductions of up to Rs 1.5 Lakh. You can also get an additional tax benefit of Rs 50,000 u/s 80CCD(1B) by investing in NPS.

2. Make Minimum Contributions

If you have an active PPF or NPS account, but you haven’t made any contribution to it this year, do it before the year ends. If you fail to do so by 31st March, your account will be deactivated and you will have to pay some money as reactivation fees.

3. Do Charity

If you have plans to do some charity, there is no better time than now to do so. Make donations under section 80G/ 80GGA/ 80GGB/ 80GGC by 31st March 2019 to expand your tax gains.

4. Submit Proofs of Investments

One investment alone cannot help you save optimum tax. Like the Avengers need a whole bunch of superheroes to take down their enemies, you need an array of tax-saving investments to succeed.

You may have made several investments and expenses during the FY which can reduce your tax outgo. By submitting the proofs of such investments and expenses, you can stop your employer from deducting TDS on your salary. Generally, employers collect proofs of investment during the months of December and January. However, you can still submit them if your employer allows it for TDS calculation.

5. Submit Form 12B

Did you switch job during the current FY? If yes, but without giving the details of your income from salary received from the previous employer to your new employer then you will get a tax shock at the time of filing ITR. It will happen because your current employer has been incorrectly deducting less TDS from your salary. Submit Form 12B to him to set things right. This will give him a complete knowledge of your current FY’s income which will help him in deducting right amount of TDS.

6. Book your Capital Gain or Loss

Now, this is a trick that even the Sorcerer Supreme (Dr Strange) will be proud to pull off. It will work if you have investments in equity shares and equity oriented mutual funds. In the Union Budget 2018, the government imposed Income Tax @ 10% on LTCG of more than Rs 1 Lakh on the aforementioned investments. So, if you are planning to book such gains, better do some of it now. Do not book Capital Gain of more than Rs 1 Lakh in total and save tax on it. You can book the rest later.

You can also reduce your tax liability by booking capital losses on your investments in shares, mutual funds or other securities.

7. Pay Advance Tax

Unless you are operating under the presumptive income scheme, the due date to pay the fourth and final instalment of Advance Tax has already passed. Yes, 15th March 2019 was the due date to pay the last instalment of Advance Tax for FY 2018-19. If you missed it, you are accumulating interest every day under section 234B and section 234C on your due amount. You better pay it as soon as possible to avoid accumulating any more penal interest.

8. Pay TDS on Rental Payments

If the rent you pay to your landlord for your house is high, then you have an additional tax-related obligation. If the rental payment is Rs 50,000 or more, you must deduct TDS @ 5% on the total rent paid during the year. Much to your relief, this is a one-time activity which needs to be done before the end of the FY.

You just have a few days in hand to deduct TDS. Post this, you must deposit it to the government’s account within 30 days from the end of this month to avoid paying penalty on it.

9. File Belated Return

31st March 2019 is the final chance for you to file the ITR for the FY 18-19. In case, you missed the first and second due dates, i.e. 31st July 2018 and 31st December 2018, then you must file it now.

Since your return will now be considered a belated return, you must file it along with an applicable late fee of Rs 10,000. However, filing by 31st March will still save you from a heavy non-filing penalty.

10. File Revised Return

With the end of the FY 2018-19, your window of opportunity to revise the tax returns filed for FY 16-17 and FY 17-18 will also close.

Section 139(5) earlier allowed the filing of revised return at any time before the expiry of one year from the end of the relevant assessment year or before the completion of the assessment, whichever is earlier. But, the said section was amended due to which the period allowed for revision was reduced by one year.

Hence, you can file original as well as revised return only during the assessment year.

So, finish the discussed tasks to end your FY with a solid endgame.

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Niteesh Singh
Niteesh Singh
Niteesh is a Tax Researcher and Content Lead at H&R Block (India). He holds an MBA with a specialisation in BFSI domain. In his career spanning over six years, he has helped thousands of people understand taxes in a simple and effective manner. Outside work, Niteesh is an astronomy geek who is also involved in wildlife conservation activities.