Income tax department wants to know a little bit more about you

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The income tax department wants more information from you about your finances and business. The new income-tax return forms released by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) for filing returns for the financial year 2017-18 have several new columns. These new forms for various categories of taxpayers are Sahaj (ITR1) , Form ITR-2, Form ITR-3, Form Sugam -ITR-4, Form ITR-5, Form ITR-6, Form ITR-7, and Form ITR-V.

By collecting more specific information from taxpayers — from seeking details about allowances of salaried persons not exempt from tax to matching direct and indirect tax numbers of businesspersons — the income tax department aims to check tax evasion.

“There are more than 25 key changes in the new ITR forms than in the previous ones. Some of these changes clearly suggest that the focus of new ITR forms is to get more information from unlisted companies, trusts and taxpayers who have opted for presumptive taxation scheme. Further, the ITR forms also require the business entities to report the GST transaction which would help the department to independently reconcile the transactions reported by them in income-tax return and GST returns,” said Naveen Wadhwa of

Below are the details of some of the extra information income tax department seeks from taxpayers.

1. The new Sahaj form wants you to disclose specific details about your salary. It seeks an assessee’s salary details in separate fields and in a breakup format such as allowances that are not exempt, value of perquisites, profit in lieu of salary and deductions claimed under section 16. Though these details are provided in the Form 16 of a salaried employee, now they have to be mentioned in the tax return for clarity of deductions.

2. The new Sahaj form also seeks details about income from property such as gross rent received/ receivable/ letable value; tax paid to local authorities; annual value; interest payable on borrowed capital; and income chargeable under the head house property.

3. Under the ITR-4, assessees who have presumptive income from business and profession will have to furnish their GST registration number and its turnover. This is aimed at checking tax evasion by comparing direct and indirect tax numbers.

4. Instead of the simple (ITR)-1 form, non-resident Indians (NRIs) will have file returns using the ITR-2 which seeks more information. NRIs will also have to provide details of one foreign bank account for refunds.

5. Certain types of taxpayers are now required to mention registration number of the firm of chartered accountant which has done audit for the tax return.

6. Businesses will have to disclose income from property.

7. Firms are required to quote Aadhaar number of their partners or members. Similarly, in case of a trust, Aadhaar number of related functionaries have to be mentioned.

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