Archiving income tax return (ITR) is of utmost importance because it meets both legal obligations and financial responsibilities. By filing your ITR, you comply with tax laws and demonstrate your commitment to being a law-abiding citizen. In addition, it allows you to accurately assess and report your total income, including various sources, ensuring transparency in your financial affairs.
Filing ITR facilitates the calculation of your tax liability, taking into account applicable tax rates, and allows you to claim deductions and exemptions for which you qualify. Keeping to the deadline and filing ITR on time will help you avoid fines, penalties and legal ramifications.
When it comes to filing ITR, you have the option to submit them online or offline. Let’s discuss the differences between the two methods:
Ease: Online filing allows you to submit your ITR from the comfort of your own home or office. You can access the official income tax e-filing portal (https://www.incometax.gov.in/iec/foportal/) and complete the process online.
Speed and efficiency: Online filing is generally faster compared to offline methods. The process is streamlined and the portal guides you every step of the way. It also performs several validations to ensure accuracy, reducing the chance of errors.
Instant recognition: When you file a declaration online, you will immediately receive a confirmation in the form of a confirmation number. This serves as proof of submitting your ITR.
Fast processing: Online returns are typically processed faster by the income tax department, which means you can get your tax refund faster (if applicable).
Digital files: By submitting an application online, you have a digital overview of your ITR, making it easier to view and retrieve if necessary.
Offline ITR declaration:
Physical presence: For offline filing, you must physically visit the income tax department or authorized centers to file your ITR. This can be time consuming, especially if there are long queues or if you have to pass by several times.
Manual paperwork: Submitting offline involves filling out physical forms and attaching the necessary documents. This can be more prone to errors and may require extra effort to ensure accuracy.
Processing delays: Offline filings may take longer to process compared to online filings due to manual processing and potential data entry delays.
Confirmation receipt: When submitting offline, you will receive a stamped receipt as proof of submitting your ITR. It is essential to keep this receipt safe as it may be required for future reference.
In general, online archiving offers greater convenience, speed, accuracy and efficiency compared to offline archiving. It has become increasingly popular and is encouraged by the income tax department. However, if you prefer the traditional method or have specific circumstances that require offline archiving, you can still choose that option.
Filing ITR not only demonstrates your financial discipline, but also enables you to build a credible financial history and access benefits such as tax refunds and smooth financial transactions in various aspects of life.