All You Need to Know About the New One-Page I-T Return Form

The government on Friday notified a simpler, one-page form for filing income tax returns while making it mandatory to quote Aadhaar number and disclose bank deposits of more than Rs 2 lakh after demonetisation.

The Income Tax Return (ITR) Form-1 – or Sahaj – will replace the seven-page form, removing a plethora of columns on deductions from income claimed.

Sahaj can be filed by an individual with income of up to Rs 50 lakh from salary, house property and interest.

Currently, ITR-1 is for salaried employees, and ITR-2 by individuals and HUFs (Hindu Undivided Family) whose income does not include income from business.

New income tax return form for financial year 2017-18. (Photo Courtesy: Screenshot/Central Board of Direct Taxes)

Also Reads: 10 Income Tax Rules That Will Come Into Effect From 1 April

How Does the Form Make Filing Simpler?

  • Parts relating to tax computation and deductions have been rationalised and simplified for easy compliance
  • Besides personal details, an income tax filer needs to disclose only his income from salary or pension, one house property and other sources like interest. Thereafter, deduction claims are to be stated, followed by computation of taxable income
  • Bank details are to be filled in the column following that. Details of advance tax, self-assessment tax payments and tax deducted at source come next
  • In the column for providing bank details, cash deposited in excess of Rs 2 lakh during 9 November to 30 December, 2016 has to be mentioned
  • Instead of 20 columns of deductions in the old form, only four deductions claims in respect of Section 80C, 80D, 80G and 80TTA need to be filled

Also Read: Mr Jaitley, It’s Time to Question Relevance of Personal Income Tax

Changes in the New ITR Form

The rationalised ITR will "reduce the compliance burden to a significant extent on the individual taxpayer," the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said, adding that the move would benefit more than two crore taxpayers.

"Simultaneously, the number of ITR forms have been reduced from the existing nine to seven forms. The existing ITR Forms ITR-2, ITR-2A and ITR-3 have been rationalised and a single ITR-2 has been notified in place of these three forms," it said.

Consequently, ITR-4 and ITR-4S (Sugam) have been renumbered as ITR-3 and ITR-4 (Sugam), respectively.

There will be no change in the manner of filing of ITR Forms – and all the returns are to be filed electronically.

However, where return is furnished in ITR-1 (Sahaj) or ITR-4 (Sugam), an individual of the age of 80 years or more, an individual or HUF whose income does not exceed Rs 5 lakh and who has not claimed any refund in the return of income, has an option to file return in paper form.

Also, ITR-4 (filed by Individuals & HUFs having income from a proprietary business or profession) will now be known as 'Sugam' and ITR-4S will be substituted.

Also Read: One Person Owes 11% of India’s Total Pending Income Tax in 2014-15

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