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Income tax returns filed after due date cannot be revised
May, 28th 2015

A belated tax return for a particular financial year (FY) can be filed within two years from the end of the relevant FY under section 139(4) of the Income-tax Act, 1961. However, a belated tax return has the below outlined shortcomings:

Revision of tax return is not allowed: A belated tax return cannot be revised. The option of revising a tax return is available if the original tax return is filed with the tax department within the specified due date. In a situation where you intend to claim a foreign tax credit/relief under the double tax avoidance agreement based on a foreign tax return subsequent to filing the India tax return or identify any omission or misstatement in the original tax return filed, you can revise the tax return. This revision is possible only if the original tax return is filed within the due date.

Waive the right to carry forward losses incurred during the FY: If the tax return is not filed by the due date, the losses (except for specified losses) incurred in an FY cannot be carried forward to subsequent FYs to be offset against the corresponding income streams.

Interest: In case taxes have not been paid entirely before the due date, there will be an additional interest on account of delay in payment of taxes and subsequent delay in filing the tax return.

Penalty: Please note that for not filing tax return, in addition to the above limitations, a penalty of Rs.5,000 may be levied at the discretion of the tax officer.
How much house rent allowance (HRA) is exempt from income tax?

An employee can claim an exemption as per the provisions of the section 10(13A) read with rule 2A in respect of the HRA received from her employer. The exemption can be claimed only if an employee receives the HRA and stays in a rented house, which is not owned by her and actually pays rent for such a house.

The quantum of HRA exemption shall be restricted to the minimum of the following:
• Actual HRA received for the period the house was occupied, or
• Actual rent exceeds 10% of salary for the relevant period, or
• 50% of salary if you live in a metro city (i.e., Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata), or 40% of your salary if you live in a non-metro city.

Salary for above purpose means basic salary, which includes dearness allowance, if the terms of employment so provide, but excludes all other allowances.

An individual who does not receive HRA as part of salary and is staying in a rented apartment can claim the deduction in respect of rental payments as per the specified formula of section 80GG and subject to the conditions specified therein.

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