People who have filed tax returns electronically in the last five years but have not completed the filing process by authenticating either electronically or by sending a signed physical copy can now rectify the returns by opting for a one-time opportunity, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said on Monday.
Taxpayers who have not verified the returns electronically filed in assessment years 2015-16 to 2019-20 can now do the verification either by sending the signed physical copy (form ITR-V) or by any of the five specified electronic methods by the end of September, CBDT said in a circular.
Incomplete return forms can be verified electronically by either using a password sent to the Aadhaar-linked mobile phone number, logging into the e-filing website of the tax department through net banking, or by using the bank account number or the demat number or with the help of cash dispensers installed by banks (ATMs), CBDT said.
Usually taxpayers have four months to verify an electronically filed return from the date of uploading it. If not verified, the law mandates that the authorities can proceed against the assessee for defaulting on the filing obligation.
The additional time was being given as “a one-time measure" for resolving the grievances of taxpayers associated with non-filing of ITR-V for earlier assessment years and to regularize such returns that have either become non-existent or have remained pending due to non-filing or non-receipt of respective ITR-V forms.
The relief, however, does not apply in cases where officials have already taken action for ensuring compliance.