Missed filing ITR? Dec 31 is last day to file belated income tax returns

Missed filing ITR

Missed filing ITR:  “Better late than never,” as the saying goes, applies to filing your income tax return (ITR), but missing the deadline can have negative effects.

Individuals who have not yet submitted their income tax returns for the fiscal year 2022–2023 ought to act right away. December 31, 2023, is the last day on which people can fulfill this obligation. Nevertheless, there are fines and interest associated with late filing if this deadline is missed. Understanding the ramifications and the importance of timely filing is therefore essential.

Read also: Which is the right ITR Form: For Salaried Professionals ITR 1 or 2?

Interest and late filing fees

The first income tax return submission deadline for the assessment year 2023–2024 (fiscal year 2022–2023) passed on July 31, 2023. For those who missed this deadline, they now have until December 31 to file their income tax returns.

Realizing that the December 31 deadline affects all taxpayers—individuals, corporations, those undergoing audits, and those who are not—is crucial.

If people do not file their returns by the deadline, they will be charged a late filing fee as per Section 234F of the Income Tax Act. The late fee is ₹5,000 for individuals who did not meet the deadline. For those taxpayers, the maximum penalty will be ₹1,000, provided their total income is still less than ₹5 lakh.

In addition, interest under section 234A will be assessed to a taxpayer for late filing of their return. The amount of unpaid tax is used to calculate this interest, which is calculated at a rate of one percent for each month or portion of a month.

Consequences of non-filing

If ITRs are not filed at all, there may be serious repercussions. Losses from the current assessment year cannot be carried forward by taxpayers, and non-compliance may result in penalties. Depending on the degree of non-compliance, penalties can vary from fifty percent to two hundred percent of the tax that was assessed.

Read Also: Revised Income Tax Return under Section 139(5) – Time Limit, Procedure, Provisions

Updated option for returns

Taxpayers may still submit an Updated return within 24 months of the conclusion of the applicable assessment year, even if they missed the December 31 deadline. This provision was added by the Finance Act of 2022 to give an extension for filing income returns. Nevertheless, there will be additional income tax due upon filing an updated return. Since, Section 140B of the Income Tax Act requires taxpayers to pay additional tax.

Read also: ITR Refund: When it will be received FY22-23

Updated return filing requirements

The ITR forms for the relevant assessment year that were notified must be used by taxpayers to file their updated returns. This needs to be completed in addition to the ITR-U form. It is significant to remember that amended returns cannot be filed in order to receive a refund of taxes. Taxpayers who wish to file refund claims must follow the initial filing deadline.

Prosecution potential

Prosecution of late taxpayers may be pursued in extreme circumstances involving large-value discrepancies. Completing tax filing requirements is essential in order to stay out of trouble with the law.

Read Also: ITR Filing is compulsory in 15 cases – check if you fall in any
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