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The Moneycontrol
Tax-Filing Guide

The tense, once-a-year ritual is just around the corner. Yes, the time to file your income-tax returns, after many extensions, is now December 31. From getting all the documents in place, to choosing the right return forms, to manoeuvring through the tax portal, avoiding pitfalls and finally calculating and paying your dues, we have every bit of detail you would need to make the process smooth. Here is our detailed coverage for the income tax return filing season of AY 2021-22.

Some taxpayers get lower amounts as refunds: Here's what you must know

Some tax consultants attribute this to the new I-T portal’s e-filing utilities that come with pre-filled data related to your income

Explained: All about the new annual information statement of the income tax department

Information about various financial transactions executed by the taxpayer is obtained by the department from various financial entities

Filing your income-tax returns in the new portal? Here’s a simple step-by-step guide

This is the first assessment year when you will have to indicate the tax regime you have chosen

Tax Form 26AS gets comprehensive: Mutual fund dividends, off-market trades and foreign remittances to be captured

The I-T department is trying to populate as much financial data as possible and track people who do not pay due taxes

Explained: Presumptive income tax scheme and why it helps those who find it difficult and costly to maintain books of accounts

Once you file income under presumptive tax scheme, you have to follow the same method for the next five years. In case an assessee opts out in an year, she shall not be allowed to file return under it for the subsequent five years

Filing your income-tax returns? Avoid these five mistakes

In case you switched jobs during financial year 2020-21, do not forget to obtain the form-16 issued by the previous employer

  • Video: Key income tax changes to know before filing your returns

    The extended due date to file income tax returns for the assessment year 2021-22 is less than two months away. However, you can initiate the process right away, so that you work on it carefully instead of rushing through the exercise at the last minute. Watch this video to understand the changes in income tax rules and forms applicable to this assessment year.

  • Video: Filed your tax return? Here’s how to track the refund status

    The Central Board of Direct Taxes issued refunds of over Rs 82,229 crore to more than 53.5 lac taxpayers between April 2021 and October 2021. If you are also among those awaiting your tax refund, but are yet to receive it, watch this video to find out how to track the status of refunds.

  • Video: Yet to file your income tax returns? Avoid these mistakes

    Filing income tax returns can be challenging for people even if they are not new to the filing process. Here is a guide to avoid common mistakes while filing the returns.

Filed your tax return, but yet to receive your refund? Here’s what you should do

Typically, income-tax refunds get credited to the bank accounts of assessees within a few weeks.

Confused on which ITR form to use? Here’s help

Selecting the right ITR form is crucial to avoid unnecessary delays in processing returns and conflicts later on.

Filing your income tax returns? Here are answers for five frequently asked questions

Using a wrong ITR form will result in your returns being held invalid


Simply Save podcast | Common mistakes you must avoid while filing income tax returns

Preeti Kulkarni spoke to Vaibhav Sankla, a veteran in the tax consultancy space and founder of the Billion Basecamp Family Office.

Simply Save podcast | Paid excess tax due to fewer deductions? Make up for it while filing tax returns

Preeti Kulkarni explains how to go about claiming these tax breaks now.

Simply Save podcast | Filing your income tax returns? Here’s a do's and don'ts checklist

Keerthana Tiwari and Preeti Kulkarni provide a final checklist of things to remember while filing your tax returns.

Frequently Asked Questions
Why is it important to select the right income-tax return form?
Depending on the category you fall into, there are seven Income Tax Return (ITR) forms for you to choose from for filing your return. For the assessment year 2021-22 (financial year 2020-21), ITR-1 (Sahaj) and ITR-2 are the most relevant forms in the case of salaried individuals. Filing a wrong ITR form will result in your returns being held invalid.
I had forgotten to submit investment proofs to my employer in January. Can I claim these deductions while filing returns?
Yes. The deadline set by employers for submitting investment declarations to avail of deductions under section 80C, 80D, 80E and so on is January or February. However, despite multiple reminders from employers, many tend to skip submission of proofs for tax-saver investments. As a result, a higher amount of tax is deducted from the salary during the last three months of the financial year. If you missed submitting the proofs, you can enter the details in your tax return form and claim the deductions and tax refund.
What are the most common errors made while filing income-tax returns?
Small errors made when filing income-tax returns can make your returns null and void. These errors could be as simple as not choosing the right assessment year. Remember, you will be filing income tax returns for the financial year 2020-21 and, thus, assessment year 2021-22. Double-check your bank account details. Entering incorrect details could lead to a delay in getting your tax refund.This assessment year is when the alternative tax regime will become effective. Salaried tax-payers can choose between the old, with-tax-benefits regime and the new system even at the time of filing returns. You will also have to declare your dividend income in the tax return forms this year.
What if I forget to disclose some income that I had earned? Will the income-tax department send me a notice?
It’s possible that some of us forget to disclose certain incomes, even if unintentionally. This is the case particularly with salaried individuals who rely on their Form 16, which does not contain details of capital gains, fixed or savings deposit interest incomes, for instance. If the income tax department detects this missing income, you could end up getting a notice.
Do I need to complete the verification process after filing tax returns?
Yes. Simply because filing won’t be considered complete until you verify the returns. This must be done within 120 days of having filed your ITR. But many forget to do so even though the electronic process can be completed in a matter of minutes. You can also download the ITR-V, or acknowledgement form and send it physically to the tax department’s CPC office in Bengaluru..
Should I opt for the e-verification process or the physical mode?
It is best to take the online route. The physical process is more laborious – you have to download, print and sign the hard copy before sending it to the Income Tax CPC, Bengaluru, by post. On the other hand, e-verification takes just a few minutes. You can use Aadhaar-OTP or your internet banking account, your pre-validated bank or demat account to generate an electronic verification code (EVC) to complete the process.
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