Articles explains What are the due date of Filing Income Tax Return (ITR) and what happens if one fails to file the Income Tax Return (ITR) by the due date.

7People are under the impression that if they fail to file their income tax return by the due date,  they can not file it later on. This due date is perceived to be sacrosanct and is a  now or never thing. This is not so. Let us discuss.

What is the last date for filing of my income tax return:

Before we discuss the consequences of failing to file the income tax return by the due date let us first understand the due dates applicable in your case. For general category  which covers all the salaried persons, the due date for filing of the income tax return is 31st July, 2018. However in case you are engaged in any business or profession and your accounts are  subjected  to tax audit,  the due date gets extended till 30th September, 2018. Even for a  working partners in a partnership firm, the due date would be 30th September 2018 if the accounts of the partnership firm are subject to tax audit. The business persons for whom the provisions of transfer pricing are applicable the due date is 30th November, 2018.

What happens if you miss the deadline to file Your Income Tax Return (ITR):

In case you fail  to file your income tax return by 31st July 2018,  you can still file the same by 31st March 2019 and not beyond that. If you fail to file your income tax return by the due date,  and you have any business loss or capital gains loss in the current year,  you will not be able to claim carry forward of such losses which you want to set off against profits of subsequent years. Moreover in case you are entitled to get an income tax refund, you will lose the interest in respect of the refund claim for the period of delay attributable to you. Please note that you also will have to pay penal interest on the amount of tax for the period of delay in case any tax deducted at source or paid as advance tax falls short of your tax liability.  In case you miss the due date of 31st July 2018 you will have to pay a late fee for delayed filing of such return. The late fee would depend on when you have actually filed your income tax return and what is your total income. In case you file your income tax return after 31st July 2018 but by 31st December, 2018  you will have to mandatorily pay a late fee of Rs. 5,000/- and in case you miss this deadline as well,  the late fee applicable will be Rs. 10,000/- . There is relief for small taxpayers with income upto Rs. 5 lakhs, the amount of late fee in such cases shall be restricted to Rs. 1000/- only.

What happens if you fail to file your ITR even by 31st March 2019:

In case you fail to file your ITR by the last date and the income tax department comes to know about it, the income tax department can levy a penalty of 50% on the income for the year/s Moreover the income tax department can also launch prosecution against you for your failure to file your ITR in case the tax sought of be evaded is more than three thousands. The period of imprisonment may vary between two years and seven years depending on the amount of tax involved.

Balwant Jain is a tax and investment expert and can be reached at [email protected] and @jainbalwant on twitter.

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