Step by Step Guide To File Online Income Tax Returns!

income tax returns

As per section 139(1) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 in the country, individuals whose total income during the previous year exceeds the maximum amount not chargeable to tax, should file their income tax returns (ITR).

The process of electronically filing income tax returns is known as e-filing. You can either seek professional help or file your returns yourself from the comfort of your home by registering on the income tax department website or other websites. The due date for filing tax returns (physical or online), is July 31st.

Who should e-file income tax returns?

Online filing of income tax return is very easy and can be done by most of the assessees.

  • Assessee with a total income of Rs. 5 Lakhs and above.
  • Individual/HUF resident with assets located outside India.
  • An assessee required to furnish a report of audit specified under sections 10(23C) (IV), 10(23C) (v), 10(23C) (VI), 10(23C) (via), 10A, 12A (1) (b), 44AB, 80IA, 80IB, 80IC, 80ID, 80JJAA, 80LA, 92E or 115JB of the Act.
  • Assessee required to give a notice under Section 11(2) (a) to the assessing officer.
  • A firm (which does not come under the provisions of section 44AB), AOP, BOI, Artificial Juridical Person, Cooperative Society and Local Authority (ITR 5).
  • An assessee required to furnish returns U/S 139 (4B) (ITR 7).
  • A resident who has signing authority in any account located outside India.
  • A person who claims relief under sections 90 or 90A or deductions under section 91.
  • All companies.

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Types of e-filing:

  • Use Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) to e-file. It is mandatory to file IT forms using Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) by a chartered accountant.
  • If you e-file without DSC, ITR V form is generated, which should then be printed, signed and submitted to CPC, Bangalore by ordinary post or speed post within 120 days from the date of e-filing.
  • You can file e-file IT returns through an E-return Intermediary (ERI) with or without DSC.

Checklist for e-filing Income Tax Returns:

There are a few prerequisites to filing your tax returns smoothly and effectively. Major points have been highlighted below:

Choose the right form to file your taxes electronically:

It is always important to choose the right Form to file your income tax. Below are the types of forms and when

ITR 1 (SAHAJ) Individuals with income from salary and interest
ITR 2 Individuals and Hindu Undivided Families (HUF) not having income from business or profession
ITR 3 Individuals/HUFs being partners in firms and not carrying out business or profession under any proprietorship
ITR 4 Individuals and HUFs having income from a proprietary business or profession
ITR 4S (SUGAM) Individuals/HUF having income from presumptive business
ITR 5 Firms, AOPs,BOIs and LLP
ITR 6 Companies other than companies claiming exemption under section 11
ITR 7 Persons including companies required to furnish return under section 139(4A) or section 139(4B) or section 139(4C) or section 139(4D)

Check your Tax Credit:

You should check Form 26AS before filing your returns. It shows the amount of tax deducted from your salary and deposited with the IT department by your employer. You should ensure that the tax deducted from your income as per your Form 16 matches with the figures in Form 26AS. If you file your returns without clarity on errors, you will get a notice from the IT department.

Claim 80G, savings certificates and other deductions:

You can claim extra deductions if you forgot to claim them. Similarly, you can also claim deductions under section 80G on donations made to charitable institutions.

Interest statement – Interest on savings accounts and fixed deposits:

A deduction for up to Rs.10,000 is allowed on interest earned on savings accounts. However, interest earned on bank deposits, if any, forms a part of your taxable income and is taxable at applicable slab rates.

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In addition to the above, have the following at hand:

  • Last year’s tax returns
  • Bank statements
  • TDS (Tax Deducted at Source) certificates
  • Profit and Loss (P&L) Account Statement, Balance Sheet and Audit Reports, if applicable

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List of Required Documents for e-filing of income tax returns:

It is always good to stay a step ahead, especially when it comes to tax filing (income tax returns). The checklist provided below will help you to get started with the e-filing of tax returns.

General details:

  • Bank account details
  • PAN Number

Reporting salary income:

  • Rent receipts for claiming HRA
  • Form 16
  • Pay slips

Reporting House Property income:

  • Address of the house property
  • Details of the co-owners including their share in the mentioned property and PAN details
  • Certificate for home loan interest
  • Date when the construction was completed, in case under construction property was purchased
  • Name of the tenant and the rental income, in case the property is rented

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Reporting capital gains:

  • Stock trading statement is required along with purchase details if there are capital gains from selling the shares
  • In case a house or property is sold, you must sought sale price, purchase price, details of registration and capital gain details
  • Details of mutual fund statement, sale and purchase of equity funds, debt funds, ELSS and SIPs

Reporting other income:

  • The income from interest is reported. In case of interest accumulated in savings account, bank account statements are required
  • Interest income from tax saving bonds and corporate bonds must be reported
  • The income details earned from post office deposit must be reported



How do I file e-Returns?

Steps to follow to file income tax returns:

First, log on to IncomeTaxIndiaeFiling.gov.in And register on the website.

  • Your Permanent Account Number (PAN) is your user ID.
  • View your tax credit statement or Form 26AS. The TDS as per your Form 16 must tally with the figures in Form 26AS.
  • Click on the income tax return forms and choose the financial year.
  • Download the ITR form applicable to you. If you’re exempt income exceeds Rs.5,000, the appropriate form will be ITR-2 (If the applicable form is ITR-1 or ITR 4S, you can complete the process on the portal itself, by using the ‘Quick e-file ITR’ link – this has been explained below).
  • Open excel utility (the downloaded return preparation software) and fill out the form by entering all details using your Form 16.
  • Check the tax payable amount by clicking the ‘calculate tax’ tab.
  • Pay tax (if applicable) and fill in the challan details.
  • Confirm all the data provided in the worksheet by clicking the ‘validate’ tab.
  • Generate an XML file and save it on your desktop.
  • Go to ‘upload return’ on the portal’s panel and upload the saved XML file.
  • A pop-up will be displayed asking you to digitally sign the file. In case you have obtained a digital signature, select’˜Yes’. If you have not got digital signature, choose ‘No’.
  • The acknowledgment form, ITR Verification (ITR-V) will be generated which can be downloaded by you.
  • Take a printout of the form ITR-V and sign it in blue ink
  • Send the form by ordinary or speed post to the Income-Tax Department-CPC , Post Bag No. 1 , Electronic City Post Office, Bangalore, 560 100, Karnataka within 120 days of filing your returns online.

Steps to file ITR 1 & ITR 4S Online:

Prepare and Submit ITR1 / ITR 4S (Sugam) Online

You have the option to submit ITR 1/ITR 4S forms by uploading XML or by online submission

  • Login to e- Filing application
  • Go to ‘e File’ ‘Prepare and Submit ITR Online’
  • Select the Income Tax Return Form ITR 1/ITR 4S and the assessment year.
  • Fill in the details and then click the submit button and choose DSC (Digital Signature Certificate)’ (if available) Click on ‘Submit’.
  • After submission, acknowledgement detail is displayed.
  • Click on the link to view or generate a printout of acknowledgement/ITR V form.

To use DSC, you have to register it in the e-filing application. You can do so by logging in on the e-filing website of the IT Department and updating the Profile Settings section. Under Profile Settings, you have to select Register Digital Signature Certificate and download the ITD e-Filing DSC Management Utility. You can use this utility to generate the DSC file.



Frequently Asked Questions: e-filing Income Tax Returns:

  1. I file ITR online without an account on the Income Tax e-filing portal? No, You have to create an account on the portal to file your ITR online. It is an easy process’“ you have to register yourself by providing details such as user type (individual, HUF, companies, chartered accountants, agencies or tax deductors), your PAN, first and middle names and surname, date of birth, and fill in the registration form. If you already have an account but have forgotten password, you can generate it through the’˜Forgot Password’ option.
  2. How many days do I have to verify the Income Tax Returns I filed online? You have to either send the ITR-V to CPC, Bangalore, or verify it online through electronic verification code or Aadhaar-linked one-time password, within 120 days of e-filing the return.
  3. Can I e-verify my ITR instead of sending a hardcopy to CPC, Bengaluru? Yes. The Income Tax Department now allows you to e-verify ITR through an electronic verification code (EVC) or through a one-time password by linking your PAN and Aadhaar.
  4. Can I e-file my return before all my tax payments are done? You can only file your Income Tax Return’“ online or through an agency’“ after all your tax payments for the year are done. The deadline for filing ITR is July 31 of the year after the end of a given assessment year’“ that is, you get 4 months to file ITR. This helps you put your accounts in order and make sure all tax-related payments are sorted.
  5. Is it mandatory for me to do the e-filing or can I depute it to someone? You can seek the help of chartered accountants and agencies dedicated to ITR filing. It is wiser not to allow anyone to have your PAN and password in order to prevent any kind of fraud.
  6. How to check the status of Income Tax Refund? You can check the status of Income Tax Refund online on the website of the Income Tax Department of India. You can track the refund status after 10 days (from the date the refund was sent to you). To check the status, you have to enter your Permanent Account Number (PAN) and choose the correct Assessment Year.
  7. What is HRA ? HRA stands for House Rent Allowance. It refers to the amount of rent you pay for your place of residence. While filing Income Tax, you can claim HRA. You can enjoy tax exemption on HRA up to a certain limit. If you are unable to submit rent receipts to claim HRA exemption, then you can claim it while filing your ITR. If you have paid more than Rs.1,00,000 on rent in a financial year, then you will have to provide the PAN of your house owner/landlord. HRA exemption will be the minimum of the following:
    • Actual HRA received.
    • Actual Rent Paid.
    • Rent Paid – 10% of Basic Salary.
    • 50% (metro)/ 40% (non-metro) of Basic Salary.

    To claim HRA exemption in ITR1 (If your employer has not calculated HRA), you have to deduct the HRA exemption amount from your Gross Salary and enter the result in the section ‘Income from Salary/Pension’.

  8. What is ITR–V? If you e-File ITR without using DSC or you e-File through e-Return Intermediary, then ITR-V form will be generated for you. You have to print this form, sign it and submit it to CPC, Bangalore using Speed Post or Ordinary Post only within 120 days, starting from the e-Filing date.

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