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Reduced Belated and Revised Return Filing Due Date

reduced-belated-and-revised-return-filing-due-date

Union Budget 2021 has reduced the due date or time limit for filing belated or revised return of income from the existing due dates. The reduction of due dates of filing of return is applicable for belated return u/s 139(4) and revised return u/s 139(5) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 (“Act”).

Finance Bill, 2021 as introduced in the LokSabha on 1st February 2021 has amended section 139 to this extent.


Section 139 of the Act contains provisions in respect of the filing of return of income for different persons or class of persons. The said section also provides the due dates for filing of original, belated and revised returns of income for different classes of the assessee.



Section 139(4) and section 139(5) of the Act contain provisions relating to the filing of belated and revised returns of income respectively. 


Presently, the belated or revised returns under section 139(4) and section 139(5) respectively could be filed before the end of the assessment year or before the completion of the assessment whichever is earlier. 


With the massive technological upgrade in the Department where the processes under the Act are moving towards becoming faceless and jurisdiction-less, the time taken to conduct and complete such processes has greatly reduced. 


Therefore, it is proposed that the last date for filing of belated or revised returns of income, as the case may be, be reduced by three months. Thus the belated return or revised return could now be filed three months before the end of the relevant assessment year or before the completion of the assessment, whichever is earlier. 


In other words, the last date to file the belated or revised u/s 139(4) or u/s 139(5) return shall be 31st December of the relevant Assessment Year.


Read more on: Reduction in Due Date for Revised and Belated Return, Defective Return u/s 139(9) provisions amended


Though the intention was to reduce the time limit of filing a belated return or a revised return by three months, the drafting of the proposed amendment was suggesting otherwise. It was already mentioned in this article that the wordings of the proposed amended provisions of section 139(4)/(5) suggests that a belated return or a revised return can only be filed after December and only in the three month period from January to March of the assessment year.


This ambiguity is now corrected and the wordings of the provisions are suitably amended to draft the provisions in the intended lines.


The amendments proposed in the Finance Bill, 2021 as passed by the LokSabha is reproduced below-


37. In section 139 of the Income-tax Act,—


(a) …….


(b) in sub-section (5), for the words “return for any previous year at any time before", the words "return for any previous year at any time, before three months prior to" shall be substituted;


(c) in sub-section (5), for the words "before the end", the words "before three months prior to the end" shall be substituted;'. 


It is also proposed to amend sub-section (4) of section 139 so as to provide that any person who has not furnished a return of income within the due date as per sub-section (1) of the said section may furnish a return for any previous year at any time three months prior to the end of the relevant assessment year or before the completion of the assessment, whichever is earlier. 


It is also proposed to amend sub-section (5) of the said section so as to provide that a return of income filed under sub-sections (1) or (4) can be revised at any time three months prior to the end of the relevant assessment year or before the completion of the assessment, whichever is earlier.


Consequential Amendment in Section 234F for Late Fees in Delay in Filing of Return


When Finance Bill, 2021 was introduced in the LokSabha on 1-2-2021, there was no amendment in section 234F related to late fees in the filing of belated return after the Due Date though there was an amendment that no belated return u/s 139(4) can be filed after December month of the relevant assessment year.


Section 234F prescribes late fees for delay in filing of return after the due date. In the case where the total income does not exceed Rs. 5,00,000 and belated return is filed after December from the period January to March of the assessment year, Late fee is fixed at Rs. 1,000.


In case the total income exceeds Rs. 5,00,000, the late fee is increased to Rs. 10,000 if the return is filed belated u/s 139(4) from January to March of the assessment year. 


Read more on No Late Fees for Late Filing of Income Tax Return


Finance Bill, 2021 as passed by the LokSabha has amended the provision related to late fees for filing of belated return. As the last date to file a belated return u/s 139(4) cannot exceed 31st December of the assessment year, the higher late fees of Rs. 10,000 cannot be levied in any situation.


The Finance Bill, 2021 as passed by the LokSabha has made a consequential amendment to Section 234F that the late-filing fee shall be Rs. 5,000 where the total income exceeds Rs. 5,00,000.


In case the total income does not exceed Rs. 5,00,000 the late fees shall be capped at Rs. 1,000.


Hence the Late Fees u/s 234F after the proposed amendment is payable as follows-


Total Income

Return Filing Date

Late Fees u/s 234F

Any Income

Within prescribed Due Date

NA

Upto Rs. 2.5 Lakh/Rs. 3 Lakh for Senior Citizen/Rs. 5 Lakh for very senior citizen

After Due Date

Rs. Nil

Above Rs. 2.50 Lakh/3Lakh but upto Rs. 5 Lakh

After Due Date

Rs. 1,000

(For a very senior citizen, Rs. Nil)

Above Rs. 5 Lakh

After Due Date

Rs. 5,000


Read more Articles on Finance Bill, 2021

Download Finance Bill, 2021 as Passed by Lok Sabha

Record of Parliament Proceedings-Passing of Finance Bill, 2021 at Lok Sabha on 23rd March 2021

Lok Sabha Passes Finance Bill, 2021 with 109 Proposed Amendments

Finance Minister Presents Finance Bill 2021 after Union Budget 2021 in Loksabha

Download Finance Bill, 2021 as introduced in Loksabha

Download Memorandum Explaining the Provisions in the Financial Bill 2021

Income Tax announcements in Budget Speech:Union Budget 2021

New Income Tax Slab Rates after Union Budget 2021

Summary of Amendments and Changes in the Direct Tax Provisions as per Finance Bill, 2021

Changes in TDS and TCS Provisions by Finance Bill, 2021



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2 Comments

  1. ON LAST DATE I COULD NIT FILE MY I T R AS SERVERS AT I T DEPT WERE DOWN . NOW HOW DO I FILE MY RETURNS , PL CAN YOU HELP ME , TKS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unless the government extends the time limit, no one can help.

      Delete