Filing ITR AY24 On Your Own? A Senior Income Tax Expert Suggests This

ITR For Assessment Year 2023-24: An income tax return or ITR is the yearly account of your income and investments shared with the government for tax purposes. It is mandatory to file if your income is above Rs 2.50 lakh in a year. The ITR is filed for the previous financial year at the start of the new year. For example, ITR for 2022-23 (financial year) will be filed in 2023-24 (assessment year), starting April 1 until July 31. There might be confusion among the ITR filers between online ITR and offline ITR.

Radhika Viswanathan from Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP tells what you should keep in mind while filing the income tax return for the assessment year 2023-24.

Online ITR Vs Offline ITR: Which One Is For You?

The income tax department recently released the offline ITR-1 and ITR-4 forms. The Excel utilities of these ITR forms for AY 2023-24 are available for filing.

Radhika Viswanathan from Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP, said, “Online or offline ITR is not a selection by random choice but depends on the taxpayers’ situation and associated factors.”

She added that the online mode will be quicker if all details are readily available, and the taxpayer is comfortable working directly on the tax filing portal. On the other hand, an offline utility would be better if there are multiple information flows over different time periods — here one can add as and when the details are available. “Internet connectivity and the volume of data to be fed should also be considered.”

“Paper returns are accepted for a limited set of taxpayers, such as very senior citizens with non-business income. However, for effective and quicker processing, online filing is preferable,” Viswanathan said.

In the offline method, taxpayers are required to download the relevant form, fill it and then upload it on the department’s portal. However, in the online form, taxpayers can directly fill details about their incomes on the income tax portal and submit it. In both modes, the forms need to be verified by the taxpayers.

ITR Filing FY23: What Taxpayers Should Keep In Mind

Viswanathan said taxpayers need to submit their income tax returns on time to avoid last-minute rush or lapses.

“Taxpayers should ensure that the information, which is auto-populated, is correct, and complete before submitting the returns form. Form 26AS (statement of the tax credit) and annual information return (AIR) are two data sources that need to be reviewed in detail before finalising the tax return,” she said.

Who Needs To File ITR?

Companies and individuals who are earning above the income tax exemption limit are required to file an income tax return under the Income Tax Act. Currently, those individuals who earn more than Rs 2.5 lakh in a year need to file the annual ITR.

Salaried individuals need Form 16 issued by their employers to file their ITRs easily. The last date for employers to issue Form 16 is June 15, and the last date to file ITR for taxpayers whose accounts are not required to be audited is July 31, 2023, for AY2023-24 or FY2022-23.

Apart from this, companies that have earned an income (profit or loss) during the last financial year need to file the ITR.

What Are ITR-1 and ITR-4 Forms?

The income tax department has released offline utilities for ITR-1 and ITR-4 forms. There are 7 ITR forms for different taxpayers.

ITR 1 is for resident individuals (other than those not ordinarily resident) having total income up to Rs 50 lakh, having income from salaries, one house property, other sources (interest etc.), and agricultural income up to Rs 5,000.

ITR 4 is for resident individuals, HUFs and firms (other than LLP) having total income up to Rs 50 lakh and having income from business and profession which is computed under Sections 44AD, 44ADA or 44AE and agricultural income up to Rs 5,000.

(The story was originally published on May 1, 2023)

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