Step-By-Step Guide To E-Filing The ITR Before December 31

The last date of filing an income tax return (ITR) is approaching fast (December 31), and if you have not done it already, now is the time to get going. Even the income tax department has been issuing reminders for tax filing. Earlier this week, it tweeted, “Dear Taxpayers! Just a gentle reminder that the due date for filing Income Tax Returns for AY 2021-22 is 31st December 2021. Don’t wait, File TODAY!”

Firstly, visit the official income e-filing website and click on the ‘login’ button. Next, enter the ‘username’, then click ‘continue’, and enter your password. Once you have logged into the portal, click on the tab ‘e-file’ and then click on ‘File Income Tax Return’.

“Then select the assessment year for which you wish to file your income tax returns and click on ‘continue’. You will then be asked whether you wish to file your returns online or offline. In this case, you need to choose online, which is also the recommended mode of tax filing. Choose whether you wish to file your income tax returns as an individual, Hindu Undivided Family (HUF), or others,” explains Sandeep Sehgal, director, tax and regulatory, AKM Global, a tax and consulting firm.

Choose the ITR you wish to file. For example, ITR 2 can be filed by individuals and HUFs who don’t have an income from a business or profession. Similarly, individuals can choose ITR 1 or ITR 4. “Here you will have to click ‘Proceed with ITR1’. The next step will ask you the reason for filing your returns above the basic exempted limit or because of the seventh provision under Section 139(1). Make sure you choose the right option. Fill in the details of your bank account. If you have already provided the details of your bank account, then pre-validate it,” says Sehgal.

You will then be directed to a new page to file your ITR. The page will contain a lot of information filled already. Check them to make sure all the details mentioned are correct. Confirm the summary of your returns and validate it. “The final step is to e-verify your return. There are various options to e-verify your return like through DSC/Aadhar OTP etc,” adds Sehgal.

Things to keep in mind while e-filing

A taxpayer must keep in mind the following things while e-filling their return:

  • Calculate income tax liability properly as per the income tax laws.
  • Categorize all income under different heads.
  • Claim all the eligible exemptions and deductions while calculating their total income.
  • Choose proper ITR form as per income under different heads.
  • Ensure the income is not below the amount shown in the Annual Information Statement (AIS) or Form 26AS.
  • Complete the process of e-verification of return within 120 days or e-verify at the time of filing.

Common mistakes people make while filing

Here are some of the most common mistakes which people make while e-filing:

  1. Filing of ITR using the wrong form.
  2. Not reporting of exempt income or any source of income.Non-reporting of all bank accounts.
  3. Nor e-verifying the ITR filed.
  4. Leaving a mismatch in income and the tax deduction in Form 26AS.
  5. Failing to revise the ITR filed (in case revision is required in the original ITR).

Follow these steps and file your income tax returns for AY 2021-2022 no later than December 31, 2021.

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