Filing tax returns online can be a complicated process if done without the help of accounting software. Here’s a quick guide to filling out your Income Tax Return (ITR) online and getting it right the first time.
Which Form is Right for You?
India has nine different tax return forms for reporting. Choosing the right one depends on how much your business turns over and the type of company you’re reporting for.
Companies generally use the ITR-6 form, while other forms are applicable for firms, limited liability partnerships (LLPs) and companies claiming exemptions for property held for charitable purposes.
Once you’ve figured out which form you need, you can download the corresponding Excel from the government’s Income Tax India website.
Register to File
To file returns online, you must first register yourself as a company on the government’s website. You’ll need to enter your PAN card details, company name and date of incorporation, contact, address and some personal details.
A digital signature certificate is also required. To create this, you need to go to ‘Profile Settings’ and click on ‘Register a digital signature certificate’. You can then opt to use either a PFX file or USB token.
Remember to make a note of your login details and password for safekeeping. And ensure email and mobile phone details are correct because tax officials will use them to contact you if necessary.
Download and Fill Out Excel
Excels for each tax return form can be downloaded in ZIP format from the Income Tax India website. If you are not prompted to enable macros after opening it on your computer, you will need to enable it manually.
Make sure you enter details the same way they appear on supporting documents, like the PAN card.
After you’ve filled in each sheet, hit the ‘Validate’ button on the right-hand side. Then generate an XML file and save it to your computer.
File Return Online
Once you’ve filled in your form and saved it, you can upload it online. Simply log in to the government’s website, select ‘E-file’, upload the saved file and sign it using your digital signature if prompted.
Don’t forget to download the ITR-V form, which confirms your successful submission and acts as a receipt.
For more information about filing online and troubleshooting, you can check out the government’s user guide.
Use Accounting Software to Save Time
Nowadays, accounting software like QuickBooks can simplify the process of tax filing for accountants and small business owners, with tools for e-filing, tax calculation and auto-filled forms. This can remove the headaches from tax and save time for small business owners.
Filing returns online in India may be complicated, but now that you know the process you can start to prepare. Figure out which form you need to fill out, get your supporting documents in order and decide early if you want to use accounting software or other help. Acting early makes meeting deadlines a breeze.