How to Claim Income Tax Refunds in 2019

income tax refunds

When it’s time to file income tax returns, there may not be anyone who doesn’t feel the pinch of money slipping out of their hands and into the coffers of the government, even when you know that it is for the development of the country. However, do you know that the Income Tax Department also refunds your money straight to your bank account if you have filed more taxes than what you are liable to pay? What could be better news than that?

So, what can you do right now to claim any tax refunds that are due to you in 2019? Here’s all you need to know about this so you can get started right away.

What are the income tax returns that are eligible to get a tax refund?

You can get a tax refund on the tax that is deducted or collected at source, advance tax, payment of taxes on regular assessments, or on self-assessment tax.

These are the other scenarios in which you are eligible for a refund:

  1. Double taxation in the case of NRIs with an Non-Resident Ordinary (NRO) deposit in an Indian bank. The interest on such deposits is usually deducted at source. However, if you are also paying tax in the foreign country in which you are working or residing, then you are eligible to get a tax refund on the TDS on the interest earned on your NRO deposit.
  2. If your tax liability was Rs.25,000 but your employer deducted TDS of Rs.30,000.
  3. If you have not declared your income tax saving investments within the specified time and had more tax cuts, then you can file these details later with proof.

What do you have to do to get started on getting your refund?

You have to make the claim for a refund within one year from the assessment year’s last day. This claim of refund has to be done using Form 30. You will only get refunds if you have filed your taxes the conventional way. After filling your income tax return form, make sure you click on the button ‘Validate’ on the window for ‘Taxes Paid and Verification’.

When you do this, the income tax refund that you are entitled for will be automatically calculated and displayed. However, the Income Tax Department will have the final say on the quantum of amount that you finally get refunded. This is done only after the successful processing of your income tax returns, so it might take a while longer than you anticipated. Once the authenticity of the claim and the amount to be refunded is verified by the IT Department, you might either get the exact amount that was displayed on the portal or you might get a different amount.

After the returns have been processed successfully, you should get a notification from the department regarding your tax refund amount. Note that if there has been a delay in transferring the refund amount to you, then it is mandatory that interest has to be paid to you on the amount. This is dependent on how much time it was delayed and the amount of tax refund that you are owed. Income Tax Department guidelines state that this interest should be calculated at 0.5% for each month or for a part of the month. The exception to this rule is if the income tax refund amount is lower than 10% of either the tax that is determined under a regular assessment or as determined under Section 143 (1) of the Income Tax Act.

For income tax returns that were filed online, keep an eye out on your email inbox as it will be sent as an email notification. You will also get an SMS sent to your registered mobile number.

Tracking the status of your income tax refund

To track the status of your income tax refund, the easiest way is to visit the e-filing website of the Income Tax Department and log into your account using your registered user ID and password. Then check under the ‘My Account’ tab for ‘Refund/Demand Status’. You will be given a reference number for your refund in the notification sent to you by the IT Department. The only details you need otherwise are the assessment year that you are checking the refund status for and your PAN.

Here you will find various meanings for IT Refund status messages that you might get when you check your income tax refund online and what to do about them.

State Bank of India has been authorised by the department to transfer all income tax refunds to the taxpayer’s bank account. This can be either through a direct transfer or through a cheque. Make sure that your bank account number has been listed accurately on your income tax return forms.

Be sure to follow the points above and get your income tax refund accurately and on time for smiles all around.