The Indian government has further extended the deadline for citizens to file Income Tax Returns. The deadline for the ITR filling date for the FY 2023-24 is July 31, and taxpayers can file their returns from April 1 onwards.
If you’re a citizen of India and hold a Permanent Account Number (PAN), The Income Tax Act, 1961 makes it mandatory under various scenarios for a taxpayer to file an income tax return at the end of every financial year.
For this purpose, the Income Tax Department provides three different facilities to citizens to declare their income and get the mandatory Income Tax Returns certificate.
In this article, we will show you the top three ways to file your Income Tax Returns for the financial year 2022-2023 and ensure that you don’t miss the deadlines. Maybe you’re unaware that not filing Income Tax Returns on time can make you a defaulter and you could be liable to face legal action under the Income Tax Act of 1961.
If this sounds interesting, continue reading further.
Who Should File ITR?
The first question here is that who should file Income Tax Returns or ITR. Actually, all Indian citizens are mandatorily required to declare their income to the Income Tax Department at the end of the financial year and before the deadline set by the department for that year, expires.
This might sound strange but minor children also have to declare their Income Tax if they’re earning an income.
An income tax return is a form filed to report the annual income of a taxpayer. There may be various reasons for filing an income tax return even in the absence of income.
Certain categories of people are exempt from declaring their Income Tax, such as those engaged in agriculture and similar activities. However, if they hold a PAN card, they also have to file an ITR at the end of the financial year and get the verified ITR certificate from the Income Tax Department.
Ways to File Income Tax Returns
Now, lets see the three different ways to file your ITR. You can use any of these three methods to ensure that your ITR is filed before the deadline and that you’re not liable to pay any penalties or face legal action.
Filing Income Tax Returns through Chartered Accountant
The simplest way of filing an Income Tax Returns is through a Chartered Accountant. To do so, you have to visit a Chartered Accountant’s office and express your wish to file the ITR.
A Chartered Accountant is authorized by the Indian government to calculate your income, spending, donations and other expenses and calculate the amount of money that you need to pay as Income Tax for the year.
A Chartered Accountant will make an Excel sheet listing all the income you received during the financial year. This income includes your salary, interest from bank deposits, profits on stocks and Mutual Funds as well as money you receive from other assets such as renting out your house. They will also calculate the expenses such as your spendings on medical treatment, donations to registered charities, living costs, rent and others. All these will feature on the Excel sheet.
The CA will then file your Income Tax Returns either online or offline. In any case, they will attach the Excel sheet with your ITR to show the Income Tax Department your income and expenses and how they arrived at the amount of money that you’ve to pay as Income Tax.
Filing ITR through Income Tax Portal
There’re two distinct ways to file Income Tax Returns through the Income Tax portal of the Indian government. In the following sections, I will describe both of them in detail.
To use the Income Tax portal, you first need to create own account. I will explain to you, how to make an account on the Income Tax portal, which can help you file your Income Tax Returns on time and avoid penalties or legal action.
Steps to Register on Income Tax Portal
Follow these simple steps to create your account on the Income Tax Portal of the Indian government. The registration process is quick and you can create an account within minutes.
- Visit the Income Tax portal on this link.
- Click on Register as New User
- Key in your PAN card number as the User ID
- Create a password of your choice
- Fill in the captcha code
- You will be directed to a new page
- On this page, you can submit details such as your Aadhar card number
- Fill in your full name
- Give your email ID and contact number
- Fill in your address
- Select whether you’re paying taxes as an individual, Hindu Undivided Family, trust or company
- Indicate that you’re a salaried person
- Click on the ‘Submit’ link
- You will get a confirmation on your email stating that you’ve successfully registered as taxpayer on the Income Tax Portal.
You can also create an account on the Income Tax portal using details from your Aadhar card. In such cases, a One Time Password will be sent to your mobile phone number that is registered with your Aadhar card.
All the details such as your name and address will appear on the Income Tax Portal account that you’ve given on the Aadhar card. However, you can change these later.
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Filing ITR Offline
You can follow these simple steps to file your Income Tax Returns for 2021-2022 offline too. However, you will need to login to the Income Tax portal as per instructions that I’ve provided above.
- Download ITR form available on the Income Tax Portal
- Visit the site www.incometax.gov.in and click on ‘Downloads’ from the top menu bar.
- Fill your details on the downloaded file
- After downloading the offline utility, fill in the relevant details of your income, and check the tax payable or the refund receivable as per the calculations of the utility. The details of income tax challan can be filled in the downloaded form.
- Validate the information entered through self-declaration
- There’re a few links on the right-hand side of the downloaded form.
- Click on the ‘Validate’ button to ensure all the required information is filled.
- Convert the file to XML Format
- Upon successful validation, click on the ‘Generate XML’ button on the right-hand side of the file to convert the file into XML file format.
- Upload the XML file on the Income Tax Portal
- Login to the Income Tax e-filing portal and click on the ‘e-File’ tab to select the ‘Income Tax Return’ option.
- Provide the necessary details such as PAN, assessment year, ITR form number, and the submission mode. Remember to choose the option ‘Upload XML’ from the drop down corresponding to the field name ‘Submission Mode’ as given in the image below.
- Attach the XML file from your computer and click on the ‘Submit’ button.
- Choose one of the available verification modes—Aadhaar OTP, electronic verification code (EVC), or sending a manually signed copy of ITR-V to CPC, Bengaluru.
Filing Income Tax Returns Online
This is the simplest and easiest way of filing your Income Tax Returns every year. It is effortless and helps you to pay taxes on time to the Income Tax Department, thus avoiding penalties and legal action. You can file an ITR online within a few minutes and receive confirmation of the payment of taxes, almost instantly.
- Login to the Income Tax Portal
- Click on e-filing of Income Tax Returns
- Now, you will be asked to select the form for filing your ITR
- Click on ITR Form-1
- The ITR Form-1 will open on your page
- All your details such as PAN card number and address with PIN code will appear
- Now, key in the figures of your income
- This is very simple since all you need to do is show how much money you earned during the financial year.
- Next, key in different types of income, if any
- Mention the amount of money you spent as house rent
- Mention the amount of money you donated to any registered charity
- Mention the amount of money spent on education
- Mention the amount of money spent on medical treatment of self and family members
- Provide details of the banks where you have accounts, especially the salary account
- Click ‘Next’
- Another page will open up where you can mention all supplementary income
- If there’s no supplementary income, click ‘Next’
- Different pages will open. You can skip these pages if they’re not relevant
- The final page will ask you to review and verify the details that you’ve given
- Upon verification, you can click the Self-Declaration to affirm that all the information you’ve given is correct
- Next, click on the Submit button
- You will receive an acknowledgement stating that your ITR has been filed and is pending verification at the Income Tax Department
- You can verify your ITR by getting an OTP on your mobile number
- Once this is done, you’ll get an email stating that you’ve successfully filed your tax forms.
- You will receive an email confirmation of your ITR later. This can take up to 180 days since the Income Tax Department takes some time to verify your ITR.
FAQs on How to file ITR on Income tax Government Portal
Q: When is the last date for filing my ITR?
Ans: The Indian government has extended the deadline for filing ITR to March 31, 2023. However, you shouldn’t wait for the deadline since filing your ITR earlier is the best thing to do. It can save you a lot of hassles and help avoid penalties and legal action against you.
Q: Is it compulsory to file an ITR even if my income is low?
Ans: As per the Income Tax Act 1961, it is compulsory for all Indian citizens, except those in the exempt category, to file their ITR. It is most important to file your ITR if you hold a PAN card, since it is issued for Income Tax purposes only.
Q: What are the benefits of an ITR certificate?
Ans: An ITR form verified by the Income Tax Department, which is also known as the Income Tax certificate, is a very useful document. Firstly, it will save you from paying penalties or facing legal action for not declaring your income and filing an ITR. Secondly, an ITR is used by banks and financial institutions to check your eligibility for loans and credit cards. Thirdly, you can update the address on your Aadhar card using an IT certificate as your address proof.
Q: Is it compulsory for children to pay Income Tax?
Ans: The Income Tax Act 1961 exempts children from paying Income Tax. However, if the child is earning income due to activities such as modeling or acting in movies and documentaries or others, it is mandatory to file an ITR.
Q: Are there any offline ways to file an ITR.
Ans: Yes. There’re two offline ways to file your ITR. The first is by visiting a Chartered Accountant and second by downloading the Income Tax Form-1 from the portal and filling it manually. Both these processes are explained in this article.
Q: Where can I send my ITR for verification, if I file it offline?
Ans: You have to send your completed ITR to the Common Service Center of Income Tax Department in Bengaluru. The ITR has to be sent by ordinary mail or Speed Post only. You cannot send it by Registered Post.
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