Why Income Tax Department issue Notices?

Why Income Tax Department issue Notices?

The Department issues notices under various provisions of the Income Tax Act 1961 for the purpose of the ensure greater Income tax compliance and procedure.

In recent times, the Department has access to a wide range of financial information of taxpayers and the same is utilized for identifying potential cases of tax evasion. Department also takes help from computer-aided scrutiny system (CASS), which generate cases where there is a discrepancy in income tax return data.

Income Tax

REASONS FOR NOTICE FROM INCOME TAX DEPARTMENT

Some common reasons leading to notice from the Income Tax Department may include;

1.Escaped Income

If Assessing office has reason to believe that the taxpayer has knowingly or unknowingly left some part of income from the income tax return, he or she may get a notice from the department under Section 147 of the Said Act.

2. Not filing returns if income is above the exemption limit

The Assessee who have income exceeding the taxable limit must file their income tax returns under section 139 of the Income Tax Act 1961.

3. Not declaring income from all sources

The taxpayer is required to pay taxes on total taxable income during the year. Therefore it is necessary to include the income from all heads in the income tax return. e.g. Salaries, House Property, Capital Gain, Other Sources.

4. Mismatch in TDS details as per Form 26AS and details filed in income tax return

There may be the difference between TDS details as per Form 26AS and details filed in income tax return. Before the filing of income tax returns, Assesse should ensure that the tds and income that he/she is claiming in their income tax returns must match with 26AS of the Income tax efiling website.

5. Mismatch in income, expenses, and investments

Generally, investments and expenditure of the taxpayer should match with his or her income. unless it may create some problems for the assessee.

VARIOUS SECTIONS UNDER WHICH NOTICE CAN BE SENT

There are various sections under which the Income Tax Department may send notice. These sections include;

NOTICE UNDER SECTION 131

Income Tax Department has got power under this section related to the discovery of escaped income and production of evidence etc. The department under this section may ask a taxpayer to submit further documents to verify income source and investment details.

NOTICE UNDER SECTION 139(9)

Under this section, the taxpayer receives intimation of a probable defect in the income tax return and he or she is given an opportunity to rectify the same within 15days from the date of such intimation or within such extended period as may be allowed. If the defect is not rectified within the aforesaid period, the return may be considered as an invalid return and accordingly, the assessee may be deemed to have furnished no return.

NOTICE UNDER SECTION 142 (1)

This section provides that the department may make necessary inquiries before completing the assessment.

INTIMATION UNDER SECTION 143 (1)

Under this section department may intimate the taxpayer to pay excess tax amounts due to reasons such as calculation errors etc.

NOTICE UNDER SECTION 143 (2)

This is a service of notice for regular assessment. Detailed scrutiny assessments are done under this section. It can be served only if a return has been filed. All relevant documents related to investments, claim for tax deductions, allowance and source of income in the relevant financial year are generally called for.

It has to be served within the time limit of 6 months from the end of the Financial Year in which return of income is filed.

NOTICE UNDER SECTION 148

Under this section, notice is issued in those cases where the income tax department has reason to believe that some income has escaped assessment.

NOTICE UNDER SECTION 156

Where any tax, interest, penalty, fine or any other sum is payable in consequence of any order passed, the department may serve upon the assessee a notice of demand under this section, specifying the sum so payable.

WHAT TO DO WHEN NOTICE IS RECEIVED

Taxpayers need not worry if they get a notice from the Income Tax Department. Instead, they should try to understand the reason for the notice and act accordingly. The taxpayer should collect all documents related to the assessment proceedings including Form 16 (in case of salaried employees), Form 16A, details of income and expenses, bank statements along with narration of entries therein, credit card statements, details of loans, gifts and investments etc.

On the basis of the documents and information filled in ITR Forms asked in the notice, a proper reply should be prepared for submitting to the income tax officer on the hearing date. It must be kept in mind that the case may go for some months before a final decision or order.

Assessee himself may pursue the matter, If he or she may take the professional help of a Chartered Accountant, as providing less or more information than necessary, may go against him/her.

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