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ITR filing for FY 2020-21: Documents required; different ITR forms; and how to file income tax return

ITR filing for FY 2020-21: Documents required; different ITR forms; and how to file income tax return

Though many taxpayers have already filed their ITRs before the final deadline for December 31, some are yet to file returns. To avoid financial penalty, taxpayers have less than a month for file their income tax return.

The last date to file income tax return is December 31, 2021. The last date to file income tax return is December 31, 2021.

The last date of filing income tax returns for the assessment year 2020-21 is December 31. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) Income Tax Department had extended the deadline for filing of ITRs from September 30, 2021, to December 31, 2021, on September 9, 2021. The decision was taken given difficulties faced by the taxpayers and other stakeholders in the filing of income tax returns on the government's new tax portal, which was facing technical issues.

The new income tax e-filing portal -- www.incometax.gov.in -- which was unveiled with much fanfare on June 7, had a bumpy start with taxpayers and professionals reporting glitches and difficulties in its functioning. Tech services giant Infosys was given the contract to develop the portal in 2019. In fact, the finance ministry had on August 23 "summoned" Infosys CEO Salil Parekh to explain why issues continued to plague the portal. In the wake of difficulties faced by taxpayers in filing ITR via the new portal, the government had extended the deadline.

Though many taxpayers have already filed their ITRs, some are yet to file returns. So, to avoid financial penalty, those who have not filed their ITRs have less than a month.

Notably, taxpayers can choose between the existing or the new tax regime that offers lower tax rates. However, if you choose the new tax regime, you'll not be able to avail of exemptions and deductions offered as per the Income Tax Act, including 80C, 80D,80TTB, and HRA.

Here's the breakup of tax rates under the existing and new income tax regimes:

Documents Required to file ITRs

The procedure of filing ITR generally varies according to the income -- salary, business, and profit on investment -- you generate in a year. Generally, to file an ITR, one needs to have an income tax login ID and password, and submit basic documents like Form 16, Form 16A, PAN Card, Aadhaar Card, capital gain statement, salary slip, Form 26 AS, PAN card, Aadhaar, and bank statement.

Penalty for late ITR filing

Those filing ITR after the due deadline will have to pay a penalty of Rs 5,000. Till last year, the penalty charges for filing ITR after the due date were Rs 10,000. If your total income does not exceed Rs 5 lakh a year, the maximum penalty levied is Rs 1,000. If your evaded tax amount exceeds Rs 25 lakh, there's a provision of 6 months to 7 years of jail term.

How to file ITR online

  • Go to the Income Tax e-Filing portal, incometax.gov.in/iec/foportal/
  • Login to e-filing portal by entering user ID (PAN), password, captcha code and click 'login'.
  • Click on the 'e-file' menu and click 'Income Tax Return' link.
  • On ITR Page: PAN will be auto-populated; select 'Assessment Year'; then 'ITR Form Number'; then 'Filing Type' as 'Original/Revised Return'; and 'Submission Mode' as 'Prepare and Submit Online'.
  • Click on 'Continue'
  • Read the instructions carefully and fill all the mandatory fields of the Online ITR Form; to avoid loss of data/rework due session time out, click on ‘Save Draft’ button periodically to save the entered ITR details as a draft.
  • Choose the appropriate verification option in the 'Taxes Paid and Verification' tab.
  • Choose any one of the following option to verify the Income Tax Return: I would like to e-verify, I would like to e-verify later in 120 days from date of filing; I don't want to e-verify and would like to send signed ITR-V through normal or speed post to "Centralised Processing Center, Income Tax Department, Bengaluru - 560 500" within 120 days from date of filing.
  • Click on 'Preview and Submit' button, Verify all the data entered in the ITR.
  • 'Submit' the ITR.
  • On choosing 'I would like to e-Verify' option, e-verification can be done through these methods by entering the EVC/OTP when asked for: EVC generated through bank ATM or generate EVC option under my account; Aadhaar OTP; prevalidated bank account; and prevalidated demat account.
  • The EVC/OTP should be entered in 60 seconds else, the ITR will be auto-submitted. The submitted ITR should be verified later by using 'My Account > e-Verify Return' option or by sending signed ITR-V to CPC.
  • You can view the uploaded ITRs

Different types of ITR forms

As discussed earlier, your ITR Form may vary as per the come generated in a year. There are 7 different types of income tax forms, which taxpayers can use to file ITRs.

  • ITR Form 1 (Sahaj):  Those who earn income up to Rs 50 lakh a year from sources like salary, house rent, agriculture, interest on investment, and pension. Mostly, salaried individuals file ITR Form 1.
  • ITR Form 2: It's for taxpayers and HUFs with income up to Rs 50 lakh a year from salary, pension, house rent and interest on investment, but don't earn income from profits on business or profession.
  • ITR Form 3: This form is for taxpayers with partnership firms. Their income from salary, house rent, interest and bonus is taxable under ITR Form 3.
  • ITR Form 4: If you own a business income or earn a salary of up to Rs 50 lakh, this form is for you.
  • ITR Form 5: It's for any individual or HUFs or business with Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) or Body of Individuals, or Association of Persons (AoPs).
  • ITR Form 6: Companies that don't get exemption under Section of IT Act can file this form.
  • ITR Form 7: This return form can be used by persons including companies who are required to furnish returns under section 139(4A)or section 139(4B)or section 139(4C)or section 139(4D). The category of persons whose income is unconditionally exempt under various clauses of section 10, and who is not mandatorily required to furnish their return of income under the provisions of section 139, may use this form for filing return.