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Why is an Income Tax Notice Issued?

An income tax notice is received from the Income tax department which might be alarming and frightening to the recipient. On receiving a notice, the taxpayer shall understand the nature of the notice, and the request or order in the notice and take steps to comply. The notice can be sent for different reasons like filling or non-filing of the income tax return for the purpose of making the assessment or to ask for certain details.

The common reasons are not filing returns, a discrepancy in the tax paid when compared with the amount, entering into high-value transactions but not filling tax returns, unexplained cash credits and any other reason leading a tax officer to believe that there could be income tax evasion. In this blog, we will be discussing the process of checking the notice online.

What are the Types of Income Tax Notices?

The income tax department sends different types of notices given as follows:

1. Notice u/s 143(1) for Intimation of the return –

When we file the income tax return, it is electronically processed by the income tax department after processing the department sends the intimation to the assesses in three cases:

·        Tax liability to be paid

·        Refund to be determined

·        There is no refund although there can be an increase or decrease in the amount of loss.

Intimation from the department shall be received within period of one year starting from the end of the year in which the return is filed. You can also download the income tax notice pdf from your e-mail ID.

2. Notice u/s 139(9) for Defective return–

At the time of processing the return, if the department finds any defect, mistake or missing information in the return filled, then the department issue the notice to ratify the error.

3. Notice u/s 142(1) for Inquiry notice before assessment–

When a return is filed and during the assessment period, the assessing officer is of the opinion to demand further details and documents. Then the assessing officer is obligatory on the part of assesses to furnish it.

4. Notice u/s 143(2) for scrutiny notice –

After receiving the document of income tax notice India, if the AO is still of the opinion that there is a need to do scrutiny and then the AO may issue the notice. The officer wants to satisfy that the assesses has not done any of the following:

·     Understand your income,

·     Claimed excessive loss, or

·     Paid lesser taxes

5. Notice under section 148 –

This notice is sent in cases where the assessing officer has a reason to believe that a taxpayer has filed the return on a lower income or is not filled when it is mandated by the law. The deadline for providing notice under this section is conditional on the amount and type of income that was concealed.

6. Notice sent under section 156 –

An income tax notice online is sent when there is any demand like a penalty, fine, tax or any other amount which the taxpayer is supposed to pay the income tax department, a notice is issued. This is also called the notice of demand and the taxpayer should pay the due amount within 30 days of receiving the notice.

7. Notice under section 131 –

If the assessing officer believes that the taxpayer is concealing his income or a part thereof, he can serve a notice under this section.

8. Notice under section 245 –

This notice is served when a person has not paid taxes in the previous financial year where you had a tax liability and the tax refund of the current FY can be used to pay the due tax liability.

How to Check Income Tax Notice?

Before replying to the notice, it is important to verify whether the notice/ order issued is genuine and issued by the income tax authority. The following steps to notice are the following:

·     Go to the income tax e-filling portal. On the home page, go to ‘Authenticate notice/order issued by ITD’ under ‘Quick links’.

·     One can authenticate using:

1. PAN, document type, assessment year, issue date and mobile number (for notice/ order/ letter issued for AY 2011-12 and subsequent years only)

2. Document Identification number and phone number (given for all assessment years)

·     If you select want to authenticate by PAN, document type, assessment year, issue date and mobile number, select the option and enter all the details for the income tax notice check online.

·     Once the details are filled, you will get an OTP. Enter the OTP received. When the OTP is validated then the DIN of the notice which is issued with the date of issue of the notice will also be shown. If the notice is not issued by the ITD, it will display a message – no record found for the given criteria.

·     A second alternative is to authenticate with DIN and phone number.

·     Enter DIN and mobile number and continue. You will receive an OTP. Validate using OTP. A successful message will appear if the notice/order has been issued by the relevant income tax authority. Otherwise, it will show – No record for the given document number.

How to Send an Income Tax Notice Reply to A Demand Notice from the Income Tax Department?

The income tax officer (ITO) as per the jurisdiction will upload the demand notice. You can access the content of the notice by login into your e-filing account on the website. The step-to-step guide for a reply to the notice is given below:

Step 1: Log in to your e-filing account on the income tax website with your user ID and password.

Step 2: Click on E-file and then click on ‘Respond to outstanding tax demand’ option.

Step 3: You will see the following details displayed –

·        Assessment year

·        Section code

·        Demand notification number

·        Date of raising the demand

·        Outstanding demand amount

·        Uploaded by

·        Rectification rights

·        Response – submit and view

Step 4: Click on ‘Submit’ for the relevant assessment year. You can choose anyone of the options given below:

·        Demand is correct

·        Demand is partially correct

·        Disagree with demand

You can make an income tax notice download from the e-filling account.

Conclude Now…

A person must not lose his calm after receiving the notice from the income tax department. You must find the reasons for sending the notice and take the necessary action to address it. You have two options, first is to submit the required paperwork or file the returns after making the adjustments according to the same. The second is filing returns, when you are asked to appear in person before a tax official, you should do so or designate a tax professional to handle the situation.