Missed the IT Return deadline? Now What?

If you missed your Income Tax Return deadline, you stand to lose some benefits, but you can still file your returns before March 31, 2018. Read on to know more.

August 31, 2018 3:29 IST | India Infoline News Service
Yesterday (August 31, 2018) was the last date for filing income tax (IT) returns for salaried individuals and people with professional income. If, however, you have your own business or profession whose accounts need to be audited, your due date would be Sep 30, 2018. This date also applies to a working partner in a partnership firm.
Please note that individuals belonging to the general category (salaried) from Kerala can file their returns until September 15, 2018.
Coming back to those who missed it, there’s both good news and bad news.
The good news
Even if you have missed the IT Return deadline, you can still file your returns. But, make sure that you submit a belated return by the end of the assessment year, that is, March 31, 2019.
The bad news
Penalty: The IT Department will charge a penalty on late filing.  The penalty varies with the income slab and the extent of delay in filing.
Income slab Penalty Amount
Income less than Rs5lakh Rs1,000
Income more than Rs5lakh
Belated return filed before Dec 31 Rs5,000
Belated return filed after Dec 31 Rs10,000

Bear in mind, however, that the imposition of penalty depends on the discretion of the assessing officer.
Interest on due tax: In most cases, delayed filing will also lead to payment of interest at 1% per month on the due income tax amount.
No interest on tax refund: According to Section 244A of the Income Tax Act, taxpayers are eligible to get interest at 0.5% per month from 1st April of the assessment year till the date on which refund is issued. Refund and interest on refund is payable in case of tax deduction at source (TDS) or advance-tax payment. On delays in filing returns, one is not eligible for any interest on refund.
Further, refund processing is also faster for those who file returns on time, which is not the case for late filers.
Carrying forward of losses: If you file IT returns after the deadline, you won’t be allowed to carry forward capital losses.
What if you don’t file IT Returns even by March 31?
If you don’t file returns even after March 31, 2019, the IT Department may take note of it. In that case, you will be subject to a penalty of 50% of your FY2017-18 income. Further, you also stand the risk of being prosecuted and jailed for two to seven years.
For more information on efiling and how-tos, click here.
Ensure that you file your taxes if you haven’t done so yet. Better late than never!

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