ITR filing: Forgot to verify your income tax return? Do this

ITR filing: Forgot to verify your income tax return? Do this

New Delhi: Income tax return filing is one of the most important financial tasks of the year. It’s essential that you file your income tax return on or before the due date with complete and accurate information about income and other information asked to fill in the ITR form. ITR filing last date for FY2020-21 is December 31, 2021.

The last step of filing income tax return is verification of ITR. As per income tax laws, the ITR must be verified within 120 days from the date of filing ITR. A taxapyer can verify their return in six different ways. While ITR can be verified electronically in five different ways, one can also do it by sending a physical copy to Centralized Processing Centre (CPC), Bengaluru.

Note that if an ITR is not verified within 120 days of filing, the tax return will not be treated as a valid return by the income tax department. Further, the ITR will not be taken up for processing by the tax department if not verified. Also, any tax refund claimed by the taxpayers will not be given unless they have filed a verified ITR and the same has been confirmed by the income tax department after processing.

What to do if the ITR is not verified within the prescribed time limit:

In case there is a genuine reason due to which ITR was not verified within the prescribed time limit, an individual can file a condonation delay request on the e-filing income tax portal. At the time of filing such a request, they will be required to mention the reason explaining why ITR was not verified earlier. The income tax department accepts condonation delay request if certain conditions are met. These criterion include:

  • A claim is genuine and correct;
  • Income for which tax return is filed is not assessable in the hands of any other person;
  • There is genuine hardship faced by the taxpayer due to which ITR was not timely verified

If you have failed to verify your tax return, here’s how you can file condonation delay request:

Step 1: Login to your account on the income tax portal.

Step 2: Under the ‘Services’ tab on your Dashboard, select ‘Condonation Request’.

Step 3: On the ‘Condonation Request page’, select the type of condonation request you want to proceed with. (Currently income tax department shows only one option: Delay in submission of ITR-V). Select it and click on ‘Continue’.

Step 4: On the ‘Delay in submission of ITR-V’ page, click on ‘Create Condonation Request’.

Step 5: On the ‘Select ITR page’, select the record for which you want to raise a condonation request for delay in ITR-V submission and click on ‘Continue’.

Step 6: On the ‘Provide reason for delay page’, select the reason of your delay and click on Submit.

A success message along with a Transaction ID will be displayed. Keep a note of the Transaction ID for future reference. You will also receive a confirmation message on the email ID and mobile number registered with e-Filing portal.

Remember that under the Income-tax Act, there is no specific provision providing for a limitation period for filing a condonation delay request. However, CBDT vide Circular No. 9/2015 dated June 9, 2015, has provided that no condonation application for claim of refund/loss shall be entertained beyond six years from the end of the assessment year for which such application/claim is made.

How to track status of delay condonation application:

You can easily track the status of condonation request through the new income tax portal. The status can be tracked through the ‘Condonation Request’ option under the ‘Services’ tab. Till the time your delay condonation request is not accepted, you will not be able to file ITR. While there is no timeline specified for the approval or rejection of condonation request, usually such requests are processed by the tax department within 3 to 4 months.

What if condonation delay request is rejected?

In case the application is rejected the return will remain unverified and a non-verified return is treated as an invalid return under the income tax laws meaning the individual will have to bear all the consequences of not filing a tax return. In case a condonation request of the assessee is not granted, they would be subject to penal provisions as per the IT law.

Consequences of not filing ITR:

  • Late filing fees of Rs 5,000 under section 234F. However, if the total income of the taxpayer is up to Rs 5 lakh, late fees would be restricted to Rs 1,000.
  • The taxpayer would also be subjected to interest under section 234A at 1% per month or part of the month for any amount of tax remaining unpaid.
  • No ability to claim the benefit of certain deductions and/or set off and carry forward of losses other than loss from house property loss, due to non-filing of the tax return within the prescribed due dates.
  • I-T Dept can levy a penalty under 270A on account of under-reporting of income which would be equivalent to 50% of the tax avoided by the taxpayer by way of non-filing of return
  • The taxman can also initiate prosecution under section 276CC with respect to the defaulting taxpayer wherein he may be subjected to a rigorous imprisonment for a term which shall range from minimum 3 months to two years and along with fine, depending on the amount of tax evaded.