In the wake of increasing the tax payers base multifold and ensure a strong control over compliance in the country. The income tax department has been putting lot of efforts for last couple of years by constantly spreading the awareness on a mass scale via different mediums like TV, radio, newspaper ads, social media etc.,
“Listening to radio ads for 5-6 times of income tax department while on the way to your office was not common at all 2-3 years back and on social media too the department is active like never before”.
There have been lot of efforts made by the department to ensure that the taxpayers find it easy to comply with law and regulations. For this it has revamped the online income tax filing portal and process. ITR forms have been worked upon constantly to be more simpler and much easier to fill and understand. Education to people about taxes etc. is being provided at a large scale. Simultaneously department also targeted on catching those who are not filing their tax return at all or filing willful wrong returns or delaying it. Also, penalties, interest, fee etc. are imposed as per provisions in the law.
With insertion of section 234F the ITD has taken the biggest call ever to ensure, compliance is taken seriously. Now there will be a compulsory fees of upto Rs. 10,000; to be paid by a taxpayer if the income amount exceeds Rs. 2,50,000 and return is not filed on time. In addition to this interest will be applicable as per existing provisions of sections 234 A,B and C.
In prescribed cases it is mandatory to file ITR by the due date otherwise, penalty u/s 234F and interest under section 234A is attracted correspondingly.
Section 234F coming into force
The due date of filing ITR is 31st July of the every assessment year (i.e 31st July, 2018 for FY-2017-18; AY-2018-19. However, its extended to August 31st for FY 2017-18). A return filed after such prescribed time limit is called belated return (Late filed return).
The provisions of section 234F were inserted through Finance Act 2017 and were made effective from Financial Year 2017-18.
When is 234F attracted?
As per income tax where a person is required to furnish a return u/s 139 (1), fails to do so. A penalty by way of fees u/s 234F is levied on such defaulting person.
What is the quantum of Fee levied under section 234F?
A person making delay in furnishing return as explained above, shall be liable to pay fee of
Rs 5,000 – If return is furnished upto 31st December of assessment year
Rs 10,000 – If return is furnished after 31st Dec (i.e. from 1st Jan to 31st March of the relevant assessment year)
However, if the total income of the person filing the return does not exceed Rs 5 Lakhs the fee payable shall not exceed Rs 1000.
What are the special considerations involved in levy of Fee u/s 234F?
There are some special considerations to be taken note of while attracting levy of Fee u/s 234F, such as
- This fees is not payable by a taxpayer if he has successfully filed his ITR before the due date (31st July) but fails to verify the same before due date. In other words you need to file return on time and can verify ITR-V later on, within 120 days. The verification of ITR is equally legitimate whether done online or a signed copy is sent to CPC Bengaluru.
- Levy of fee under section 234F does not relieves an assessee from attraction of interest u/s 234A. Interest u/s 234A is levied on the amount of taxes unpaid on filing ITR after due date. Interest @ 1% p.m. or part thereof is charged under this section.
- If you are not required to file an income tax return at all i.e. your income is below 2,50,000 in a financial year.
The Financial Year 2017-18 has recently marked its end and very soon you will be filing its income tax return.
Since section 234F is applicable from FY 2017-18 (AY 2018-19) timely filing becomes even more crucial. So, take special care with filing your taxes timely in the current assessment year. To rest all your doubts & queries and filing ITR timely with best maximum refund and accuracy ensured, our expert team of CA’s is just a click away!!