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How to check income tax refund status
October, 06th 2017

If you have paid excess tax to the government in the previous financial year, then you are required to file your income tax return (ITR) to claim the refund. Higher tax is usually paid when during the financial year the advance tax paid by an individual, self-assessment or tax deducted at source (TDS) is more than his/her tax liability.

If the tax department determines, after processing your ITR, that a refund is payable to you, an intimation is sent to you via SMS and email. The intimation received by you shows the amount of refund that will be credited into your account along with a refund sequence number. An intimation is sent to you under section 143 (1) of the income tax Act.

The refund is processed by the State Bank of India (SBI).The refund is sent to the taxpayer either by direct credit it into their account via RTGS/NEFT or by issuing a cheque or demand draft and sending it to the taxpayer's registered address. Do make sure that you have filled in the correct bank account details while filing your ITR as the refund will be credited to this account.

Abhishek Soni, CEO,, a tax filing website, explains that there are two ways one can track their income tax refund status.

3. Click on 'View Returns/Forms'
4. Select 'Income Tax Returns' from the drop down menu and choose the relevant assessment year for which you want to check the income tax refund status.
5. Click on your acknowledgement number, which is a hyperlink.
6. A pop-up will appear on your screen that will show the timeline of filing of returns such as when your ITR was filed and verified, date of completion of processing, date of issue of refund etc.

7. Along with that it will also show details like assessment year, status, reason for failure, if any, and mode of payment.

On the TIN NSDL website

Alternatively, one can check the status of the income tax refund on the TIN NSDL website as well. Refund status is available on the website 10 days after the refund has been sent by the department to the bank, i.e., SBI.

This is how you can check the status of your income tax refund here:

1. Visit the website:
2. Enter your PAN details
3. Select the relevant assessment year for which you want to check the refund status.

4. Enter the captcha code and click on submit. Depending on the status of your refund, a message will be displayed on your screen.

What the status message means

Like mentioned above, you will get a message depending on your refund status; this is the case with the income tax e-filing and the TIN-NSDL websites. Messages displayed are as follows:

i) Refund Status - Expired: This means that the refund cheque received by you was not deposited in the bank within the stipulated time. The validity of a cheque is 90 days during which a taxpayer is required to submit the cheque to the bank to receive the payment. In such a scenario, a taxpayer is required to submit 'refund re-issue request' on the e-filing portal.

ii) Refund Status - Refund Returned: There are two reasons why this happens. If the income tax refund is sent to you via ECS (electronic clearing service), the payment transfer will not happen if you have given the wrong bank account details.
A cheque or demand draft can get returned because you have given the wrong address or your house was locked.

iii) Refund Status - Processed through direct credit but failed: It means that SBI had initiated to directly credit the refund amount but failed due to any of the following possible reasons:
1. Account had been closed;
2. Operations in the account had been stopped /restricted /On Hold;
3. It is account fixed deposit, loan, or Public Provident Fund (PPF) account;
4. It is a non-resident Indian (NRI) account;
5. The account holder may be decease ..

6. Account details are incorrect

iv) Refund Status - Refund processed through NEFT/NECS but failed: It means that refund processed through NECS/NEFT mode has failed. In this case, a taxpayer should verify the account number, account description, MICR/IFSC code given at the time of filing of return.

v) Refund Status - Adjusted against outstanding demand of previous year: This means that refund for the current year had been adjusted against outstanding demand of the previous assessment year either in-part or full. The tax department has full authority, under section 245, to do this. However, such an action can be done only after giving an intimation in writing to the taxpayer regarding the action proposed to be taken.

vi) ECS refund advice received but not reflecting in your bank account: It may so happen that you have received an email from SBI with details of the refund amount credited into your account. The ECS advice will show beneficiary name, account number, IFSC/MICR code, NEFT UTR Number or NECS sequence number etc. as displayed on the TIN website. In case the same amount does not reflect in your bank account then please check with your bank whether the amount has been credited to th ..

Refund re-issue request
In case you are required to submit a refund re-issue request due to any of the errors mentioned above, you can do it by taking the following steps:

1. Visit income tax e-filing website:
2. Click on 'My Account' tab and select the 'Service Request' option.
3. Select request type as 'New Request' and request category as 'Refund Reissue'.
4. A new screen will appear showing details such as PAN, return type, assessment year, acknowledgement number, communication reference number and response.
5. Click on 'Submit'.
6. You will be required to submit your bank and address details.
7. You will have to undergo a verification process using an electronic verification code (EVC) or digital signature certificate (DSC) to complete the process.

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