What is e-Filing?
E-filing simply means to file your income tax return electronically (online). Earlier most people used to physically file ITR in India by going to income tax department. But as the digital era came, majority of people started to file returns online. It is far easier and less tiring. It does not require any printed documents and is free.
As per the Income Tax Act, e-Filing of Returns/Forms is mandatory, if following conditions are applicable to you:
- Earn total annual income more than Rs. 2.5 lakh
- Earn income from sources other than salary like house property, etc.
- Want to claim income tax refund from the department
- Earn income from or have invested in foreign assets
- Wish to apply for visa or loan applications
- Company or a firm, irrespective of profit or loss
If you don’t pay taxes it is still advisable to e-file your income tax returns. When you want to apply for visa or loan or need to get tax refund a zero-return filing will be helpful.
Types of e-Filing
There are three ways to file Income Tax Returns electronically:
- Using Digital Signature Certificate: If you file your return using DSC no further action will be needed.
- Without Digital Signature Certificate: If you are filing your returns without DSC, an ITR-V Form is generated. This Form should be printed, signed and submitted to CPC, Bangalore within 120 days from the date of e-Filing. Once the ITR-V form is submitted no further action will be required.
- Through an e-Return Intermediary (ERI): You can file your income tax returns via an ERI with or without DSC.
How to e-File?
To upload Income Tax Return:
Step 1: Go to the official website of Income Tax Department of India and login using your credentials. If you are a new user you have to register first.
Step 2: On homepage, click on Downloads option and select the appropriate assessment year and Income Tax Return which is applicable to you.
Step 3: Download the excel utility of the Income Tax Return (ITR).
Step 4: Extract the downloaded ZIP File.
Step 5: Fill the excel utility and Validate.
Step 6: Generate an XML file and save in desired destination in your system.
Step 7: Login to e-Filing application and go to e-File then Upload Return.
Step 8: Select “ITR Form Name” and “Assessment Year” from the dropdown provided.
Step 9: Browse and attach XML file.
Step 10: Select “Do you want to digitally sign?”–> Submit.
Step 11: On successful submit taxpayer will get an option to e-verify return.