It is of paramount importance to file your Income Tax return on or before the due date because failure to do so will attract a mandatory penalty for late filing of ITR under section 234F. This guide by H&R Block India will help you understand when and how this penalty is applicable.
As per section 234F if an individual who is required to file his Income Tax Return (ITR), as per the provisions, fails to do so they can face late fees/penalties. The late fees/penalties for filing of your ITR for individuals earning more than Rs 5,00,000 per annum are as follows:
If your income is below Rs 5,00,000 then the fees/penalty levied will be Rs. 1000.
If you belong to the below categories, and do not want to be surprised with a notice from the Income Tax Department (ITD), ensure your taxes are filed annually in time:
It is wise to file your ITR annually and avoid penalties, as any appeals made cannot be heard as there are no provisions to consider for reasonable delay in filing of ITR. Therefore, it is better to be on time, than late in this case.
To ensure your taxes are filed correctly and within the due dates, enlist the aid of the tax experts at H&R Block India.
You are required to mandatorily file tax return before the due date even if your total income is below the taxable limit, if you are a resident individual except the not ordinarily resident within the meaning of Section 6(6) of the I-T Act and if you hold any asset, financial interests included, outside India as an owner, or a beneficiary or as a signing authority in any account outside India, as per the fourth provision of Section 139(1). In this case, if you file the tax return after the due date, you will have to pay late tax filing fees that will be levied according to the provisions of the law.
Let us see an example for the same.
Suppose you earn a rental income of Rs 1.5 lakh from a foreign property, then you still need to file your return of income even if you have earned below the taxable limit of Rs 2.5 lakh. This is because you have earned from foreign assets and hence it is mandatory for you to file your return by the due date 31st July. If you do not do so, then the late fees will be applicable, and you will have to pay them if you miss the due date.
If you are a resident individual and earn income below the exemption limit and file your return after the due date, you can still avail the deductions under section 80C to 80U and claim your refunds without paying late fees. This is for cases without any foreign assets or income.