|How to get Income tax refund speedily?|
TAX TALK-30.11.2015-THE HITAVADA
CA. NARESH JAKHOTIA
How to get Income tax refund speedily?
Kindly advice, by what time normally tax refund is received? Now a day, it is learnt that within one month tax is refunded. But in my case, despite elapse of 3 months, I did not receive refund so far. Kindly enlighten. [ firstname.lastname@example.org]
“Next to being shot at and missed, nothing is really quite as satisfying as an Income Tax Refund”.
Gone are the days when getting the refund was stupendous task. With the passage of time, the time taken for issue of refunds has been reduced from years to months to almost weeks now. More and more taxpayers are surprisingly finding the credit of income tax refund in their bank account within unexpectedly short period and that too without even approaching or writing to their assessing officer. As far as issue of income tax refund is concerned, CBDT deserves kudos for expediting the refund mechanisms by suitably resorting to technological advancement & making income tax department as one of the most vibrant tax administrator of the country. The timely issue of refund, besides boosting the confidence of taxpayer, has also resulted in lower interest outgo for the Government. It’s for the other government department to take the lessons for improvement while working out taxpayer friendly measure.
Though refunds are issued speedily in majority of the cases, there are instances where the refunds are withheld despite repetitive reminders & letters. There are the cases where the delay in issue of refund is on account of error on the part of the taxpayers as well. The taxpayers may not know the reasons for the delay in issue of income tax refund. However, they can take care of the following points so as to avoid the withholding of the refund by the department:
1. Non verification of ITR-V
After e-filing the return without attaching digital signature, taxpayers are required to either send the copy of ITR-V (Acknowledgment) to the CPC, Bengaluru or required to verify the ITR-V by linking it with UIN/Aadhar Card. In case the return is not verified, it is not considered as a valid return and the return remain unprocessed. As a result, the refund is not issued in such cases.
[Remedy: Submission of ITR-V within the prescribed timelines or e-verify the return by using aadhar card]
2. Mismatch in the tax paid details:
TDS credit claimed in the income tax return is not matching with the TDS reflected in the 26AS of the taxpayers. It may be noted that Salary TDS and other TDS are required to be reported in Sch “TDS-1” and Sch “TDS-2” Separately. Also Correct TAN of the Deductor should be carefully mentioned in the return. In case the TAN of the Employer/Deductor is not correctly mentioned, no matching is possible and TDS credit will not be given.
[Remedy: Verify the TDS as per Form 16/ 16A with the online 26AS record. In case of any discrepancy, contact your employer or deductor for the rectification].
3. Error in bank account details:
The income tax refund remained unpaid if the bank account details of the taxpayers are not given correctly by the tax payers at the time of filing income tax return.
[Remedy: Ensure that bank account details are correctly mentioned in the tax return, like bank account number, ISFC code, etc. If the bank account has changed after the filing of returns, communicate the new account number & ISFC code to jurisdictional Assessing Officer. The AO will instruct SBI to issue a new cheque to the new account that taxpayer has intimated].
Taxpayer should ensure that there is no error in the tax challan while making the payment like PAN error, error in the head of tax payment like advance tax, tax on regular assessment, error in mentioning Assessment Year, tax applicable (Income tax other than companies), error in quoting Challan Identification Number (CIN) etc. All the data should be carefully recorded so as to get the credit in the income tax return.
[Remedy: If there is a mistake in the payment of challan, the required correction is first required to be carried out by approaching the assessing officer. If there is mistake in quoting the CIN in the return, the facts may be updated by logging at the income tax website in the menu “My Account”].
By taking above precaution while filing the income tax return, timely credit of refund could be ensured by the taxpayers itself.
Further, taxpayer can check the status of the income tax refund online also. For this, login at https://tin.tin.nsdl.com/oltas/refundstatuslogin.html by entering PAN along with assessment years. The information is available for the past 10 years.
After submitting the request, the status message will display the reason for non issuance of the refund. Broadly, the status messages could be as under:
1 Refund not determined:
It meant that the taxpayer return has not been processed so far. The department is still working on it and there are no specific deadlines or guidance available on the period for processing of such return with the said status.
2 No e-filing has been done for this assessment year:
It meant that taxpayers has not send the acknowledgement slip (ITR-V) to the CPC, t Bengaluru or the department has not received it for some reason or the return is filed physically. In such case, either taxpayer should forward signed copy of ITR-V to the CPC, Bengaluru or should e-verify the return using aadhar linking facility. If the return is filed manually, the taxpayer should approach his assessing officer.
3 Refund is paid:
It may meant that the money is adjusted against any outstanding tax demand of other years, according to the record of the department. Further, non receipt could also be on account of change in address of the taxpayers.
4 No demand no refund:
It meant that there is no tax payable or refundable to the taxpayer. This could also be because there are some deductions taxpayer is not eligible for & so no refund is permissible. In such cases, the taxpayer needs to file a revision.
5 Contact your jurisdictional assessing officer:
It meant that CPC has processed the return and the same has been referred to the jurisdictional assessing officer either because the department has initiated assessment proceedings under Section 143 or there is a rectification, which cannot be processed by the CPC. In such case, taxpayer has to approach jurisdictional assessing officer.
By tracking the refund status online at the above referred links, taxpayers can ensure the speedily issue of refund.
[The author is a practicing Chartered Accountant from Nagpur. Readers may send their direct tax related queries at
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