Government says deadline for filing income tax has not been extended

The government on Friday announced that there is no proposal to extend the deadline for filing income tax returns beyond December 31. Revenue Secretary Tarun Bajaj said that December 31, 2021 remains the official deadline for filing income tax returns. This means that the last date for filing income tax returns for the financial year 2020-2021 or assessment year 2021-2022 is today – December 31, 2021. Failure to file returns before the official deadline can attract a fine of up to Rs 5,000.

If taxpayers miss today’s deadline, they will still be able to file ITR till March 31, 2022, but with penalty. According to the Income Tax (IT) Department, an assessee who does not submit the return of income within the time limit is allowed to file a late return later. However, certain penalty charges are applicable in case of delayed Income Tax Return (ITR).

Late income tax return attracts late filing fee under section 234F of the Income Tax (IT) Act. The amount of penalty payable by the assessees for late filing of returns increases depending on the degree of delay. Filing ITR after the due date attracts a penalty of up to Rs 5,000.

However, those with an annual income of Rs 5 lakh will have to pay a penalty of Rs 1,000 for filing ITR after the due date.

Generally, taxpayers have to file ITR by 31st July of any year. This year, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) had twice extended the last date for filing ITR to provide relief amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The procedure for filing delayed return is the same as for filing return on or before the due date.

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