ITR late filing penalty under section 234F

A summary on Section 234F penalty for ITR late filing

In this post, we will discuss the ITR late filing penalty under Section 234F and other parts of it. Let’s take a closer look at each section:

What is section 234F?

The government introduced a Section rule in 2017 called Section 234F to ensure everyone submits their taxes on time.

Here is  how it works: if you are supposed to submit your tax return but miss the deadline, you will have to pay a late fee based on when you finally do it and how much you earn.

To make things manageable, file your taxes by the given deadlines. This rule is for the tax returns of the year 2017-18. You will be charged this fee if you are late and file after July 31, 2018.

This year (2017-18) is the first time they are charging this fee without an official’s assistance.

When to file an Income Tax Return?

You must file your income tax return if:
  • Your total income (before any deductions) is more than the basic tax exemption limit: Rs. 2,50,000 (for those below 60), Rs. 3,00,000 (for ages 60 to less than 80), or Rs. 5,00,000 (for ages 80 and above).
  • You have any asset or financial interest in a foreign entity or have authority over an account outside India.
  • You are a beneficiary of an asset located outside India.

Due Dates for filing ITR u/s 139(1)

The due date for filing tax returns for FY 2018-19 (Assessment Year 2019-20) is 31/07/2019 (extended to 31/08/2019) for taxpayers not liable to audit.

The due dates for filing ITR for different categories of taxpayers are:

CategoryDue date of filing
Individuals who are not required to be audited31st July
Company or Individual whose accounts are required to be audited30th September
An individual who is required to furnish a report referred to in section 92E30th November

Who is covered under the scope of 234F?

If the return is filed after the due date, these entities must pay late filing fees :
  • Hindu Undivided Families (HUFs)
  • Individuals with taxable income
  • Firms
  • Companies
  • AOPs

Amount of fees levied under 234F

Late fees under Section 234F are applicable as follows:

  • If the return is filed after July 31 but on or before the 31st day of December of the assessment year (e.g., between July 31, 2018, and December 31, 2018, for FY 2017-18), the fee is Rs. 5000.
  • If the return is filed after December 31 of the assessment year, the fee is Rs. 10,000.
  • However, if the total income (income after deduction) is less than or equal to five lakh rupees, the fee amount will be at most Rs. 1000.

Let’s see how this applies to different income scenarios:

Rs. 1000

Rs. 3,00,0005th July 2018Not Applicable
Rs. 6,00,00031st July 2018Not Applicable
Rs. 10,00,00025th July 2018Not Applicable
Rs. 25,00,00010th August 2018Rs. 5000
Rs. 4,00,000
Rs. 9,00,00015th October 2018Rs. 5000
Rs. 4,50,00013th November 2018Rs. 1000
Rs. 18,00,00015th February 2019Rs. 10000

How to pay late fees as per Section 234F?

The Finance Act 2017 states that late fees can be settled through Self Assessment Tax (SAT) under Section 140A.

This provision for late fees (SAT) falls under Section 140A, which was also amended accordingly.

If there’s a delay in submitting an income tax return, the fee for the delay, along with the applicable tax and interest, becomes payable.

Therefore, salaried individuals should complete their tax return filing promptly, primarily upon receiving their salary (Form 16).

We have now concluded this post. Kindly share your thoughts with us in the comments section below and ask any queries you may have.


1. Can the excess TDS deducted be adjusted from the late fee payment as per Section 234F?

Ans. Yes, the income tax department will adjust the excess TDS deducted towards the payment of Fees u/s 234F.

2. Is Section 234F a fee or a penalty?

Ans. As per ITA, the amount payable under Section 234F is late fees. But many consider this as a penalty instead of a fee. The reason is that this fee is steeper, and the assessing officer has no role in deciding its applicability. It automatically applies immediately after the due date.

3. How much interest do I need to pay if I file my income tax return late, along with Section 234F fees?

Ans. In addition to the Section 234F fees, you will earn an interest of 1%. This interest is calculated monthly based on your taxable income, as outlined in detail by Section 234A.

4. Will I face a penalty for missing the e-verification of returns?

Ans. You’ll only get a penalty under Section 234F of the Income Tax Act if you have yet to file your returns by the due date.

Section 234F does not punish you if you complete the e-verification after the deadline.

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