With less than a week left for the financial year 2018-19 year to end, you have only a few days more to sort some financial opportunities at hand so as to make them accountable for in the current year.
1. File late tax returns or make revisions
The last day to file the tax returns for the financial year 2017-18 is 31 March 2019. Note that you will also have to pay a fine for the late filing and taxpayers will not be able to file tax returns if they miss this deadline as well.
From assessment year (AY) 2018-19, the tax filing or revisions (after receiving any notices) need to be completed within the AY only.
Additionally, in the 2018 Budget, a fine of Rs 5,000 was introduced under a new section 234F under the Income Tax Act for those that miss the first deadline of 31 August and Rs 10,000 for missing on 31 December deadline.
Note that the fine will be limited to Rs 1,000 if the taxable income does not exceed Rs 5 lakh for the financial year.
2. Cash on equity based LTCG
You should be aware that for the financial year 2018-19, long term capital gains (LTCG) from equity investments are only tax-free up to the extent of Rs 1 lakh per year.
For income tax purposes, equity held for over a year is considered as a long term investment.
If you have been holding company stocks for over a year and these are currently at a higher valuation, you can think of reaping the gains to the extent of Rs one lakh to take advantage of the threshold.
Besides, the markets are doing much better than they were in the last March, and it could be your time to book some profits. You can even use these profits to buy the stocks back in the next financial year, that starts next Monday.
3. Contribute to tax saving government schemes
You are required to make minimum contributions to government-backed savings schemes like PPF and NPS to keep them active.
While you need to contribute at least Rs 500 towards your Public Provident Fund (PPF) account before 31 March, you are required to transfer a minimum of Rs 1,000 per year into NPS (National Pension System) Tier 1 fund to keep it active.
4. Max out on section 80C contributions
By now you may have paid any insurance premiums or SIP due for the year. If you have still not maxed out on the Rs 1,50,000 tax exemption limit that you can claim under section 80C of the Income Tax Act, you can increase your contribution towards PPF or NPS.