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How can you get income-tax challan corrected by bank

Subhash Lakhotia

It is a common fact that a large number of tax payers of India while filling up the Income-tax Challan commit certain type of typographical mistakes at the time of filling up the said Challan. Due to this typographical mistake the correct payment of the tax is not reflected in the Income-tax record.  This is a cause of concern for the tax payers. 

A question arises as to what is to be done in such a situation.  Most of the tax payers specially all those tax payers who are filing the Income-tax Return for the first time, for them the big problem is how to rectify the mistake which has happened in the Income-tax Challan filled up by them and submitted to the bank. Generally speaking, most of the common mistake in the filling up of the Challan relates to the mentioning of TAN (Tax Deduction Account Number) or PAN (Permanent Account Number). 

It is  crystal clear that in case wrong mention of a Permanent Account Number is done in the Income-tax Challan, then the credit for the tax payment cannot be made in the account of the tax payer and the same will  be reflected in the Permanent Account Number as declared in the Income-tax Challan being filled by the assessee.

Hence, correct mention of the Permanent Account Number is very important whenever the Challan is filled up by the assessee.  Although now the tax payers are fully aware that they have to be very careful while filling up these Challans but the fact remains that sometimes these Challans are being filled up by the employees, the junior executives and other persons who might commit mistake in mentioning of the Permanent Account Number and thus slightly wrong Permanent Account Number is mentioned in the Income-tax Challan whereby the credit is not received by the tax payer.

Similarly, in the column relating to  Assessment Year also there happens a mistake.  Sometimes the tax payers wrongly write their accounting year or the financial year and later on they realize that they have committed mistake.  Due to wrong mentioning of the Assessment Year the credit for the tax paid cannot be given for the concerned Assessment Year.

This is also the cause of concern. Likewise, there may also be a mistake with regard to the amount paid by way of taxes.  To overcome all these procedural formalities, the Government has brought out a clear cut procedure of correction of the Income-tax Challan by the bank. To understand this procedure the author had written a letter to the Directorate of Income-tax (Systems). The author is very happy to inform the readers that vide letter dated 23rd August 2011 a reply has been received from the Office of the Directorate of Income-tax (Systems) which gives a clear cut simple procedure for correction in the Income-tax Challan. 

These corrections, it may be noted, can be got done  from the bank.  For this purpose, a request has to be made by the assessee to the bank for the purpose of challan correction.  The Government has also printed a format which we hope will be available with the concerned bank.  In the clarification given by the said Directorate of Income-tax (Systems) a time window has been described for correction of the request by the assessee.

As per this time limit the corrections with reference to TAN/PAN, as well as Assessment Year and the Amount can be made to the concerned bank within seven days from the deposit date.  Hence, if the assessee has committed some mistake in filling up the Income-tax Challan with reference to TAN/PAN/Assessment Year/Amount, then the assessee can make a request to the bank within maximum seven days of the date of deposit.  Likewise, if there is a mistake in other fields in the said Income-tax Challans, namely Major Head, Minor Head or Nature of Payment, in that situation the application for correction request by the assessee to the concerned bank can be made within three months of cheque deposit date.

It has also been clarified that the time window for correction by the bank is seven days from the date of receipt of correction request by the assessee.  Separate application should be made for correction of Minor Head and correction of Major Head.  One single application cannot thus be made.  However, with regard to the change in the amount as mentioned in the Challan, the guidelines clearly mention that the change of the amount will be permitted only on the condition that the amount so corrected is not different from the amount actually received by the bank and credited to the Government account.  Sometimes, the tax payers may find a problem in not being able to comply with the above time schedule. 

Hence, they need not worry at all because these guidelines as given by the Government clearly mention that after the window period available to bank for challan correction, the assessee can make a request to his or her Assessing Officer who is authorized under the Departmental OLTAS application to make such correction in Challan in bonafide cases, to enable credit of the taxes paid to the concerned assessee. Hence, if the assessee finds that the time has lapsed for making an application to the bank for correction of the mistake in the tax challan, then he need not worry at all and he can go forward to make his application to his own Income-tax Officer.

These new guidelines clearly would help the tax payers in solving out their problem.  While making an application for challan correction to the bank, please ensure that the application is made in the prescribed format of application. One can obtain this format from the concerned bank.  In the said application the tax payers should give the original details and the modified details. Likewise, the original copy of the challan, counter foils should be sent to the bank. It may also be noted that the request form for correction is to be submitted to the bank in duplicate. Likewise, a separate request form is required to be submitted for each challan.

It is expected that the above mentioned clarifications sent by the Directorate of Income-tax (Systems) will definitely help the tax paying public of India in finding a solution to their problems concerning the typographical mistakes which might happen in the tax challan.

The author is Tax and Investment Consultant at New Delhi for the last 40 years. He is also Director of M/s. R.N. Lakhotia & Associates & The Strategy Group. He can be reached at slakhotia@satyam.net.in.

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