July 31, 2019 is the last day to file income tax return (ITR) for FY2018-19 without penalty. If you file your return after midnight i.e. after July 31, then you would have to pay a late fee of upto Rs 10,000. However, if your income is below taxable limit then you won’t have to pay it even if you file after the deadline.
The penalty you will have to pay
A taxpayer is liable to pay late ITR filing fees of:
a) Rs 5,000 if tax return is filed after the deadline but on or before December 31 of the relevant assessment year (in this case December 31, 2019).
b) Rs 10,000 if tax return is filed after December 31 but before the end the relevant assessment year, i.e., before March 31 (in this case between 1 January 2020 and March 31, 2029).
If you are a small taxpayer whose gross total income does not exceed Rs 5 lakh then the maximum fees you are liable to pay is Rs 1,000. This law of levying late filing fees under section 234F was introduced in the Budget 2017 and became effective for financial year 2017-18 or assessment year 2018-19 onward. Assessment year is the year immediately following the financial year for which the ITR is filed. The assessment year for the financial year 2018-19 is 2019-20.
Who will not have to pay?
However, chartered accountants are of the view that if a person whose gross total income does not exceed the basic exemption limit files a belated return, he/she will not be liable to pay penalty. Currently, the basic exemption limit for resident individuals below the age of 60 years is Rs 2.5 lakh.
For senior citizens aged 60 years and above but below 80 years, income up to Rs 3 lakh is exempted from tax. For super senior citizens i.e. of age 80 years and above, the basic exemption limit is up to Rs 5 lakh.
“There will be no late filing fees to be levied as mentioned under section 234F of the income tax return filed after the deadline if the gross total income does not exceed the basic exemption limit,” says Abhishek Soni, CEO, tax2win.in, a tax return filing company.
Clarifying further, Shalini Jain, Tax Partner, People Advisory Services, EY India says, “Section 234F draws reference of persons liable to pay late filing fees for filing belated income tax return from Section 139 of the Income-tax Act. Section 139(1) of the Act states that the following persons have to mandatorily file ITR: (a) a company or a firm/LLP irrespective of quantum of income and (b) any other person only if his total income exceeds the maximum amount not chargeable to tax, i.e.,…Read More>>>