What happens if you don’t file your ITR, by March 2021?
The deadline for filing the Income Tax Return (ITR) for the fiscal year 2020-2021, i.e. assessment year 2020-2021, for the general category of taxpayers, which includes all salaried workers, was July 31, 2020, but it has since been extended until January 10, 2021. What happens if you miss the bus and don’t file your ITR for the evaluation year 2020-2021 by the deadline? Let’s talk about it.
Is the due date also the ITR’s last date of filing?
The common misconception is that the due date is also the deadline after which you cannot apply your ITR, which is incorrect. There are two important dates to remember while filing an ITR. The first is the due date, and the second is the deadline. If you miss the deadline, you still have until the end of the year to file your ITR. The deadline for submitting ITRs for the assessment year 2020-2021 was July 31, 2020, but it has been extended until January 10, 2021. However, the deadline is March 31, 2021. If you apply for your ITR after the deadline, however, you will face a number of consequences.
What if you don’t reach the deadline?
If you do not register your current ITR by the 10th of January 2021, you can still do so by the 31st of March 2021, but you will forfeit the right to carry forward any losses for set-off against future years’ profits. So, if you miss the 10th January 2021 deadline and have a loss under the head company profits or capital gains or a loss under the head house property of more than two lakhs rupees that you are otherwise entitled to carry forward for set-off in subsequent years, you will not be eligible to do so.
If the taxes charged by you or on your behalf surpass your tax obligation, and you are entitled to a refund for the excess taxes paid, you would not be entitled to interest on the excess taxes paid for the time of delay that is attributed to you. If the taxes charged on your behalf are less than the total tax obligation, you would be required to pay interest on the shortfall as well as interest for the time you took to file your ITR, even if you paid the shortfall after March 31, 2020.
What happens if you miss the deadline for filing your ITR?
Unless the deadline for filing an ITR for the assessment year 2020-2021 is extended beyond March 31, 2021, and if you fail to file it by that date, the income tax department will levy a minimum penalty of up to 50% of the tax you should have avoided, in addition to your income tax and interest liability before you finally file your ITR in response to the CRA.
Just a few people are aware that if you do not file your ITR, the government has the right to convict you and throw you in jail. The current income tax laws stipulate a three-year minimum sentence and a seven-year maximum sentence. The department does not have the right to prosecute you for any failure to file an ITR. Only if the amount of tax requested to be avoided reaches Rs. 10,000/- will the income department file a criminal complaint.