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Heres how to e-file your income tax return
April, 13th 2017

An income tax is a tax levied by the government on the income you earn. This income can be in the form of your salary, any consulting or project work that you do or a business you carry out. You are required to pay tax on the sum of all income earned by you through a financial year.

An income tax is a tax levied by the government on the income you earn. This income can be in the form of your salary, any consulting or project work that you do or a business you carry out. You are required to pay tax on the sum of all income earned by you through a financial year.

Income tax rates change as per different income levels. These are called tax slabs under which the minimum tax required to be paid is zero and the maximum is 30%. As your income increases, the amount of tax you have to pay also increases. This is the basic idea behind income tax.

Now, income tax return is a declaration you file regarding your income and financial transactions undertaken during the tax year. “Merely paying tax on your income is not enough, you have to file a return of the same with the Income Tax Department. The income tax return comprises details of your income from salary and other sources and the tax-saving expenses and investments that you have made through the year. Income tax returns have to be filed in the financial year that follows the financial year in which the income was earned,” says Archit Gupta, Founder & CEO, ClearTax.in.

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For example, for income earned between 1 April 2016 and 31 March 2017, the income tax return has to be filed between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018.
The first step to file income tax returns is to gather the required documents.

Form 16 if you are a salaried employee

Details of other income that you have earned

Details of income earned from investments

Details of tax-saving deductions you wish to claim

Profit and loss statement if you run a business

Of course, to file income tax returns, you will also need to have PAN and Aadhaar. The government has made it mandatory to have Aadhaar to file income tax returns from 1 July, 2017.
You need all of these documents to fill in the income tax return form, but the documents do not have to be submitted along with the income tax return. You might need to furnish the documents if they are asked for by the tax department at a later date.

“Once you have all the required information on hand, you need to create or log in to your account on the tax department’s website. The first step is to choose the correct ITR form. If you e-file on some well-known ITR e-filing websites like Cleartax, the software will choose the correct ITR form for you,” says Gupta.

The following are the ITR forms used to file income tax returns:

ITR-1: One page form for those who have income up to Rs 50 lakh and income from one house property

ITR-2: Applicable for those who have income from salary, house properties as well as income from capital gains, partnership firms, foreign assets etc.

ITR-3: Applicable for those who have income from business or profession

These are the primarily used ITR forms. There are other ITR forms as well that are required to be used for anyone with complicated sources of income.
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“The process of electronically filing income tax returns is known as e-filing. To e-file your income tax return, you need to fill out the relevant information in the ITR form and submit the same with the tax department. If you have tax to be paid, you will need to pay the same before you can file the income tax return. If you are eligible for a tax refund, you can file tax returns and the refund amount will get credited to your bank account,” says Gupta.

The final step after filing income tax returns is verifying the filed returns. This e-verification can be done using your netbanking account, Aadhaar number or by generating a verification code. Make sure you e-verify the tax returns, because returns that have not been verified are not processed by the tax department.

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