Generally, when you file your return, a notice-cum-intimation is sent under Section 143(1) of the Income Tax Act, 1961. You may not respond to this notice, as in most cases it’s an intimation stating that your return has been successfully processed.
However, sometimes the department can send, 'routine notices in the nature of providing information on arithmetical errors, mismatch of income declared in return and as appearing in Form 26AS". In case the department finds a mismatch in the tax paid or refund claimed by you vis-a-vis the tax deducted at source (TDS) in your return then you need to file a response for clarification. There could also be an error such as incorrect mention of your permanent account number (PAN) or other details.
Here is how you can respond to the notice received from income tax department :
- Login to your account in the e-filing site.
- Choose the options (Visual Returns/ Forms)
- In the dashboard click on 'Response to Communication/ Intimation u/s 143(1)(a) is pending.
- If you Fully Agree with the proposed adjustment, File a revised return in response.
If You partially agree with the proposed adjustment file a revised return for the part of the proposed adjustment with which you are in agreement and file a reconciliation statement (in the format provided at e-filing site) for the part you are not in agreement.
In case you have a received an income tax notice in which there is a tax demand then you must respond to it within the stipulated time. If it is not done a penalty of Rs10,000 for each default or failure, where the assessee is legally bound to furnish information or to comply to a notice issued by the Income tax department, but fails to or defaults in making such compliance. Additionally, there may be specific and more severe penalties, if the assessee fails to furnish certain specific documentation or information required.
In due course of time things can get escalated to prosecution, depending on the case and the penalty can be as high as 300% of tax dues and jail term can be up to seven years.
In case you need additional time to respond or to provide documents asked by the department, you should request for an extension of time to reply either by approaching the respective assessing officer or through the online portal.
Take the notices seriously and if you think you will be unable to reply appropriately, take the help of a professional expert.