August 31 was the last date to file the income tax return for the financial year 2018-19 (assessment year 2019-20). In case taxpayers missed this deadline, they can still file their income tax returns (ITRs). However, filing a belated income tax return (ITR) attracts a penalty of up to Rs 10,000. Besides this, a delay in filing ITR also makes one liable to pay interest, according to Income Tax (I-T) department's website- incometaxindia.gov.in. Filing income tax return is mandatory for individuals having an annual income of Rs 2.5 lakh or more. For senior citizens (individuals between 60 years and 80 years of age), the limit is Rs 3 lakh, and for very senior citizens (aged above 80 years), the limit is Rs 5 lakh, according to income tax rules.
Here are the consequences of filing a belated return (ITR):
1. If income tax return (ITR) is not filed within the due date, the taxpayer is not allowed to carry forward any loss. However, house property loss can be carried forward, according to income tax laws.
2. When income tax return is not filed within the due date, interest under section 234A of Income Tax Act is levied. The taxpayer is liable to pay simple interest at 1 per cent per month or part of a month for delay in filing the return of income.
3. A belated return attracts late filing fees under section 234F of the Income Tax Act. Rs 5,000 is required to be paid if return is furnished on or before the December 31 of the assessment year.
4. The penalty increases to Rs 10,000 if the asseesee file the return next year between January 1 and March, according to I-T department.
5. However, late filing fee cannot exceed Rs 1,000 if the total income of an assessee does not exceed Rs 5 lakh.
The taxman said that the total number of ITRs filed from April 1 to August 31 this year rose to 5.65 crore, compared to the corresponding period a year ago. Individuals, who have filed their ITR during this duration, can find information on the status of their submission through the Income Tax Department's website - incometaxindia.gov.in.
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