Government: You owe us money. It’s called taxes.
Taxpayer: How much do I owe?
Government: You have to figure that out.
Taxpayer: I just pay what I want?
Government: Oh, no we know exactly how much you owe. But you have to guess that number too.
Taxpayer: What if I get it wrong?
Government: You go to prison.
Though this twitter thread makes for a good laugh, very often it is this logic that might drive a tax payer to pay more than what is his or her due, while paying advance tax or self assessment tax or while paying TDS, just to be on the safer side. Nevertheless, a taxpayer has the opportunity of claiming income tax refund in circumstances that he or she pays more than his or her actual tax liability.
Step by Step Breakdown of How to Claim the Income Tax Refund Online
Step 1: Log in to the official returns filing portal of the IT department i.e. www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in.
Step 2: Register with your PAN number which will then become your user ID for the portal. This registration is important to access your filings and returns on the portal at any point of time.
Step 3: Click on the ‘Worklist’ menu and click on the ‘For Your Action ‘link.
Step 4: One must then choose either of the following options-
(a) The claim of refund is correct to the best of my knowledge
(b) Return of income is being revised wherein the correct claim of refund shall be made.
And then the submit button must be clicked.
Step 5: The taxpayer will receive a success message that will be displayed upon confirming the submission of response for refund confirmation.
Please Note: The refund shall be issued to the pre-validated bank account only. In case of refund failure, the taxpayer has the option of raising a service request in the e-Filing portal upon receiving communication of the same. In case the taxpayer does not have any pre-validated bank accounts, then he or she will be directed to complete that step first and then proceed to request for refund. In case that step fails, then the same will be communicated to the taxpayer. He or she can resubmit the request for refund reissue or for pre-validation of the bank account.
Outcome of the Processing
Once the refund claim is duly filed by the taxpayer, the same is processed and the outcome of the processing, is as follows –
- The tax calculation matches that of the income tax department and no further tax or refund is payable.
- The tax calculated does not match the income tax department’s calculation and there is additional tax that is to be paid.
- The tax calculated does not match the income tax department’s calculation and there is a reduced amount of refund payable to you.
- The tax calculated does not match the income tax department’s calculation and the full amount claimed is payable to you.
This is intimated through an email and a sms on the registered mobile number.
The status of the income tax refund can also be checked on the website. The screen will appear as follows –
Step 1: Fill all the details sought for.
Step 2: Select View Returns or Forms tab on the screen.
Step 3: Go to ‘My Account’ tab and select ‘Income Tax Returns’ option and click submit thereafter.
Step 4: The taxpayer must then click on the acknowledgement number.
Step 5: It is then that a page showing your Return details along with income tax refund status will appear.
The payment of income tax returns has been extended for the assessment year 2020-21 till March 2021. If one wishes to claim refund of his or her tax liability, it must be done as per the calendar released by the Income Tax Department.
Be vigilant and ensure that it is done in a timely manner following the due procedure that is prescribed by the income tax department. In case you require any assistance, either contact the department’s toll-free number or seek the guidance of a chartered accountant or tax professional.