You must be aware that the deadline for filing your income tax returns for the financial year 2017-18 is approaching. The last date for individuals to file tax returns is 21 July 2018 and if you have a business, your books will be required to be audited and you can file the tax returns by 30 September 2018.
Filing income tax returns is your duty as a citizen of India to help in smooth governance. Additionally, if you file it early, you can avoid not just the fine that will be charged at the rate of 1 percent for every month of delay on a pro rata basis, but the also the hassles you will have to face in case of wrongly filing of tax returns or late submission.
Whether you decide to file income tax on your own or seek the help of an accountant, filing taxes beforehand will give you the opportunity to rectify any errors that you may have made. Filing taxes takes time and requires various documents to fill the detailed breakup in the new ITR forms. So, if you start early, you will be able to detect the missing details that are required by following up with your employer/s.
If you make an error in your submission, the IT department will send you a notice asking for an explanation for the difference. This will require you provide proof regarding the same and heavy penalties if you do not respond.
Carrying forward losses
If you have incurred any loss during the previous financial years, either speculative or non-speculative, or a capital loss from selling an asset, you should be aware that these losses can be carry forwarded to a limit of some years. This way you can write it off against a profit you make and reduce your burden of tax.
But, you will only be able to write off the losses of your previous year, if you have filed your tax returns in advance before the stipulated time in those years.
The refund on taxes that is returned by the IT department is given on a first-cum-first-serve basis. This means that if you file your tax sooner, your refund will also be given to you earlier. So it is better to file your income tax returns as early as you can, with the deadline approaching closer.
You may have often experienced that websites crash because of the rush of serving too many people at once. It so happens, that most people prefer pushing tasks to a later date and there could be many trying to access the income tax e-filing website at the same time.
Not only will you become a victim of a frozen website, you may end up making mistakes in a race against time on the last day and will not have the time to rectify the errors.