Though most of understand that the filing of ITR is very important still there are large number of people who are always confused whether the filing of ITR is necessary or not? What are the consequences of non-filing of ITR in time? The answer to these questions is yes as there are various provisions under the Income Tax Act where the act has defined the consequences of non-filing of ITR in time and Section 234F deals with such cases.

Section 234F: Late Fee for Late Filing of Income Tax Return

Late Fee on Late ITR FilingSection 234F deals with the persons who are liable to pay late filing fees for delayed filing of their income tax return as per Section 139 (1) of the Income-tax Act. The Section 139(1) say that that the following persons have to mandatorily file their ITR irrespective of amount of income:

1. Any company

2. Any Partnership Firm

3. Any Limited Liability Partnership

4. Any resident who has an asset located outside of India (might include financial interest in some entity as well) OR any resident who retains signing authority for an account based outside India

Any person other than above are required to file their ITR only if their total income exceeds the maximum amount not chargeable to tax, i.e. the “Basic Exemption Limit.”

One of the proviso to Section 139 Provided also that every person, being an individual or a Hindu undivided family or an association of persons or a body of individuals, whether incorporated or not, or an artificial juridical person, if his total income or the total income of any other person in respect of which he is assessable under this Act during the previous year, without giving effect to the provisions of section 10A or section 10B or section 10BA or Chapter VI-A exceeded the maximum amount which is not chargeable to income-tax, shall, on or before the due date, furnish a return of his income or the income of such other person during the previous year, in the prescribed form and verified in the prescribed manner and setting forth such other particulars as may be prescribed. 

Section 234F states that a late fee will be levied if the return is filed after the due date says where a person required to furnish a return of income under section 139, fails to do so within the time prescribed under Section 139(1), the amount of the penalty would as follows:

1. 5000 if the ITR is filed after the due date but by 31st December of the succeeding year.

2. Rs 10,000 if the ITR is filed after 31st December of the succeeding year.

3. 1000 for small taxpayers having total income of upto Rs 5 lakh.

So to summarize,  

-the late fee U/s 234F would be applicable only if a person is liable to file the income tax return under section 139, and

-if the person is not liable to file the income tax return under section 139 then the late fee would not be applicable.

Let’s understand this with few examples.

Example-1 

Query:

Mr. Ramesh (age below 60 years) have Gross total income of Rs. 2,45,000. If he files income tax return after due date, would there be any late fee applicable?

Ans: As Gross total income of Rs. 2,45,000 which does not exceed the “Basic Exemption Limit i.e. Rs. 2,50,000, there will be no late fee in this case.  

Example-2 

Query:

Mr. Ramesh (age below 60 years) have Gross total income of Rs. 2,55,000 and no deductions under chapter VI-A. If he files income tax return after due date, would there be any late fee applicable?

Ans: As Gross total income of Rs. 2,55,000 which is exceeds the “Basic Exemption Limit i.e. Rs. 2,50,000, there will be late fee in this case. 

Example-3 

Query:

Mr. Ramesh (age below 60 years) have Gross total income of Rs. 2,55,000 and Rs. 10,000 deductions under chapter VI-A. Here the Total Income i.e. the Taxable Income does not exceed the “Basic Exemption Limit i.e. Rs. 2,50,000, now If he files income tax return after the due date, would there be any late fee applicable?

Ans: In this case Ramesh’s Total Income without giving effect to the provisions of section 10A or section 10B or section 10BA or Chapter VI-A exceeds the “Basic Exemption Limit”, hence he is liable to file his Income Tax Return under Section 139(1).  Here if Ramesh files his income tax return after the due date, there will be late fee applicable.

Author Bio

Qualification: CA in Job / Business
Company: Finance Optima
Location: NOIDA, Uttar Pradesh, IN
Member Since: 18 Jun 2019 | Total Posts: 15
Alok is the Co-Founder of "Finance Optima" a name synonymous with bespoke high quality, path-breaking, innovations & trendsetting services in finance , taxation, Investment & Management domain. He is a qualified Chartered Accountant and seasoned finance professional with the experience of c View Full Profile

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One Comment

  1. GANDHI MOHAN BHARATI says:

    This section is draconian in nature. I know of a case of an old man who was hospitalised and was in coma for nearly 80 days before he passed away. I wonde what his legal heirs did. No exemption is given. Some CA Associations need to take up a case.

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