What you need to know about filing IT returns for 2021?

Beginner’s guide to filing income tax returns for FY 2020-21

What you need to know about filing IT returns for 2021

Filing income tax returns can be a tricky process, especially if you’re new to it. Rather than making mistakes and learning through trial-and-error, refer to this quick list of FAQs that will make life a little easier for you this tax season.

What is the income tax return filing deadline for FY 2020-21?

The initial income tax return due date was 31 July 2021; however, on account of the COVID-19 pandemic, it was revised to September 30, and now the income tax deadline is extended till December 31, 2021.

However assessees who are liable to pay advance tax need to do so as per schedule, to avoid interest penalty.

How can I file my income tax return online?

You can do so by visiting the Income Tax e-Filing portal. You can initiate the process either by saving the appropriate ITR utility offline, or directly enter the relevant data online and submit it for processing.

How do I file income tax return as a salaried employee?

Most salaried assessees can file returns under either form ITR1 or ITR2. If your annual income from all sources is below Rs 50 lakh and you own one house property, use ITR1. However, if you have ownership or joint-ownership of more than one house property, you will have to use ITR2.

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What documents should I keep handy before filing my Income Tax Returns? 

It is important to enter all your tax details accurately. Keep all your income-related documents, bank account and investment details, advance tax and TDS details (Form 16 and 26AS), other certificates and deductions handy before you begin the income tax filing process.

How can I check the details of all tax deducted at source (TDS)?

All details of TDS and advance tax is available on Form 26AS linked with your PAN details. You can log into the Income Tax website and check under the ‘e-File’ menu view, or download your tax credit statement (Form 26AS) for any assessment period. You can also check TDS details via the netbanking app of all your different accounts (where PAN is linked) from which tax has been paid.

Related: How to save on your taxes in 2021: A quick guide

What Sections will help me claim tax deductions?

You can claim deductions for tax-specific investments such as tax-saving term deposits, ELSS funds, PPF, NSC, life insurance premiums, etc. made through the year under Section 80C, 80CCC, and 80CCD, as well as health insurance premiums for self, spouse, dependent children, and parents under Section 80D and 80DDB.

Do I have to report income other than salary when filing ITR?

Yes, income from all sources have to be reported when filing your ITR. This could include profit from sale of capital assets such as shares, property, or jewellery. Even if there is income generated by your spouse or minor child that is clubbed with yours, it should be disclosed in the ITR.

Is there any new process, new form, income declaration or any other declaration in ITR for FY2020-21 as compared to the previous year?

Certain changes to ITR have been introduced on account of the amendments to the Finance Act 2020. Here are some you should know of:

  • ITR-1 cannot be used by persons who have paid TDS under Section 194N for cash withdrawals over Rs 1 crore in the FY
  • ITR-1 and ITR-4 cannot be used in case of deferment on tax on ESOPs
  • ITR2 or ITR-3 to be filled if dividend income received during he FY exceeds Rs 10 lakh and taxable under Section 115B
  • Winnings from games, lottery, etc. to be listed under Schedule SI as Section 115BBDA has been made redundant

Is there anything to be done after I file my Income Tax Returns?

Yes, after you finish filing your income tax return, you need to verify that all details are true and accurate. This is done by submitting ITR-V. You can do so via your Aadhaar and OTP on the e-filing website or through your bank’s netbanking platform. You can also mail a physical copy of the verification to the IT department. The verification has to be completed within 120 days or else it renders your ITR invalid.

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