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Here's how you can check income tax refund status Filed ITR
October, 09th 2021

Income Tax Refund status check is an important process to ascertain whether one has received the refund amount sent by Income Tax Department or not. However, you will only receive this income tax refund after the tax department processes your ITR and confirms the same via an intimation notice.

This year returns have to be filed for FY2020-21 for which the extended last date is currently December 31, 2021.

The income tax refund is processed by the State Bank of India (SBI) and is directly credited to the bank account nominated by the taxpayer in his/her ITR at the time of filing it. Thus, it is important to ensure that you have mentioned the correct bank account number and IFS code.

It is worth noting that the bank account must be pre-validated on the government's new income tax e-filing portal and PAN must be linked with the bank account.

Income Tax Refund can be claimed when:

  • You did not furnish all the investment proofs to your organization. As a result, the amount of taxes deducted by your employer exceeded your actual tax liability for the particular FY. 
  • Excess TDS was deducted on your interest income from bank FDs or bonds.
  • The advance tax paid by you on self-assessment exceeded your tax liability for the applicable FY as per the regular assessment.
  • In case of double taxation

How to Claim Income Tax Refund?

Earlier, Income Tax Form 30 was required in order to claim an income tax refund. However, with e-transfer of refunds, it can now be claimed by simply filing the ITR, linking PAN with Aadhaar and validating the bank account. The ITR should further be verified, either physically or electronically within 120 days of filing. The excess tax for which a refund is claimed should be reflected in Form 26AS. Moreover, the refund is subject to verification by the Income Tax Department. It is credited only if the refund claim is found to be valid by the department.   

Ways to check Income Tax refund status?

1. On the NSDL website

  • Step 1: Go to the NSDL website to track refund.
  • Step 2: The following web page will appear. Fill in the details, including PAN and AY and click ‘Proceed’.
  • Step 3: Your income tax refund status will be displayed, as depicted in the following image.

2. On e-filing portal:

  • Step 1: Log into the e-filing portal of Income Tax department by clicking here.
  • Step 2: Select View Returns/ Forms.
  • Step 3: Go to ‘My Account’ tab and select ‘Income Tax Returns’. Click submit.
  • Step 4: Click on the acknowledgement number.
  • Step 5: A page showing your return details along with income tax refund status will appear.

ITR Refund Delay:

If you filed your income tax return for the Financial Year 2019-20 way earlier and haven’t received the refund yet, then you are not alone. A technical upgrade for faster processing of the tax returns could be one of the reasons behind the delay. Income tax department is moving to a new, technologically upgraded platform (CPC 2.0) for faster processing of ITRs. ITRs for AY 2020-21 will be processed on CPC 2.0. 

Kush Vatsaraj of TP Ostwal & Associates LLP said, "CPC 2.0 was announced officially sometime in 2019. The main reason was to cope with the increasing number of e-filed returns. Generally, refunds are processed quite quickly and smoothly especially for the majority individual taxpayers. But with covid, plus lack of funds with the govt, everything is delayed, including processing returns."

Many taxpayers who filed their income tax return for the year FY2019-20 around five-six months back are yet to receive refunds. There seems to be a delay in issuance of refunds. In fact, those who filed their ITRs in June-July are yet to receive refunds. Generally, tax refunds are issued in a period of 2-4 months," he added.

Aarti Raote, Partner, Deloitte said, "The general timeline for processing the tax refunds is 2-4 months but may vary based on the complexity of the tax returns. One observes that simple salaried tax returns where most of the income is reflected in the 26AS get processed swiftly and accurately. The taxpayers with smaller refunds (i.e. below 5- lakhs) get processed faster. However, tax returns where there is gain form property sale reflected, or where treaty relief is claimed, take time to get processed and at times the processing also is not accurate."

Refund processing:

The refund is usually processed within a month’s time of filing the ITR. After the processing of refund is completed by Centralised Processing Centre, the refunds are issued within 20 to 45 days. The refunds for taxpayers who are eligible for refunds up to Rs 5 lakh get direct bank credit within a week of refunds being processed.

However, a delay is also likely to occur if the taxpayer makes a mistake in filling the ITR. Refunds are withheld if a mismatch occurs in the ITR and the details available with the I-T department. In case of a query, the taxpayer must respond to it quickly. 

Another possible reason for the delay in issuance of income tax refunds is queries raised or clarifications asked by Centralized Processing Centre (CPC) of income tax department while processing the ITR, mismatch in ITR and Form 26AS, assessment proceedings initiated by tax authorities, certain claims made by the taxpayer in ITR which the CPC wants jurisdictional tax officer to verify etc.

In many cases, income tax refunds are not issued or are rejected due to simple mistakes like furnishing incorrect bank account details in the ITR form. In that case, check your bank account details you have mentioned in your ITR. You can also raise a refund re-issue request.

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