Penalties Under Income Tax Act


Kopal Jain | Updated: 6 May, 2022

If an assessee commits an offence under Income Tax Act, he shall be subject to penalty. Now the question arises that what will be the amount of penalty??? So, obviously penalty shall be  different from the tax payable and will also include an additional amount to be levied. Also, the penalty is imposed based upon the law at the time offence is committed and not as it stands in the FY for which assessment is being made. Some common penalties are:
  1. Default in making payment of tax- In this case, assessing officer will decide the amount of penalty. However, the penalty amount cannot exceed the amount of tax in arrears. Hence, this penalty is a general penalty.
  2. Failure to file return in respect of TDS/TCS within the prescribed time– In case of non-filing of return related to TDS/TCS before the due date, then penalty of 200 rupees for each day will be levied during which such failure continues.
  3. Default in furnishing return of income- In case of non-filing of income tax return within due date, assessee will have to pay:
    a) Rs. 5000, if return is furnished before 31st December of the assessment year.
    b) Rs. 10000 in any other case.
    However, if total income of the person does not exceed Rs. 500,000/- , then the fee payable will be Rs. 1,000/-
  4. In case of non-compliance of notice issued under section 142(1) or 143(2) or direction for audit under 142(2A), penalty shall be levied of Rs. 10,000 for each failure.
  5. Under-reporting and misreporting of income- The penalty rate shall be 50% of the tax payable on under-reported income. However, if under-reporting of income results from misreporting of income, the taxpayer will be liable for a penalty at the rate of 200% of tax payable on the misreported income.
  6. Failure to keep, maintain/retain books of account, documents as required under section 44AA- In this case, penalty shall be levied of Rs. 25,000 under section 271A.
  7. Failure to get accounts audited or furnish report as required under section 44AB- In this case, penalty shall be levied of 0.5% of total sales, turnover or gross receipts or Rs. 150,000 , whichever is less.
  8. Penalty for not deducting/collecting tax deducted at source (TDS)/ tax collected at source (TCS)- In this case, the amount of penalty will be the amount of TDS/TCS not deducted/collected. If assessee fails to furnish the TDS/TCS statement or furnish the incorrect statement, then penalty amount will be minimum Rs. 10,000 and maximum of Rs. 100,000.