Income tax returns filing
Tax officials will now focus on detection of undisclosed income and assets by accessing additional information [Representational Image]Reuters

The last date to file income tax returns is today (5 August). However, the income tax department gives up to two financial years (till 31 March 2015) to file your income tax returns, but they have related penalties if you don't file on time. So, it is better to file the returns by the stated deadline.

Here are some of the points as to what would happen if you don't file your returns by 5 August.


No tax liability: If you do not have any tax liability, i.e. you don't owe taxes to the government, you can file your income tax returns till the end of the assessment year (Assessment year will be 2013-2014), and there will be no penalty.

Tax liability exists: If you owe taxes to the government and do not file the returns by 5 August, then you will have to pay a penalty of 1 percent interest per month imposed on the balance tax amount that needs to be paid.

If you are not able to file your returns by the end of the assessment year 2013-2014, you can still file your tax returns up to one year from the end of the assessment year, i.e. till 31 March, 2015. In that case, you may have to pay a penalty of ₹5,000.

Cannot Revise Returns After Due Date

If you miss the opportunity of filing the returns by the deadline date of 5 August, you cannot revise those returns.

Tax Refunds Delay

Delay in filing tax returns will naturally result in the delay of tax refund process. You can claim tax refund even if you have filed your returns after the deadline. But, it may take longer before you can get your refund.

Carry Forward Losses

If you miss the 5 August deadline, you cannot carry forward any losses other than losses from house property. As a result, you cannot show your losses and adjust your net income next year. But if you have incurred losses from house property, those can be carried forward even if you have filed your returns after the deadline.