Unless extended by the government, the last date to file Income Tax Returns for individuals is 31st July. To file Income Tax Returns, it is mandatory to assemble various documents such as salary/income details, bank statements and previous tax statements to file the Income Tax Return. The prescribed procedure for filing income tax returns varies based on the type of income and its sources like salary, business income, investment income and others. Organising the required documents is an important part of the process, but this blog broadly discusses the documents necessary for filing Income Tax Returns in India. Choosing the Applicable Income Tax Returns form Taxpayers must select the appropriate income tax return form that applies to them. The income tax department has recently launched pre-filled income tax return forms for AY 2023-24. Determining which income tax return form to file can be challenging, but you should file the accurate income tax return form for you based on your income details. For Salaried Employees Salaried employees should collect these documents to e-file you income tax returns in India. Go through the list below to see the documents you will need to do your taxes:- PAN Form-16 issued by your employer Month-wise salary slips It is crucial to collect the information for all taxable allowances received and the amount claimed as an exemption from such allowances e.g., house rent allowance, leave travel allowance, etc., and disclose the same in the income tax return. Documents related to interest income Bank statement or passbook for interest on a savings account Interest Income statement for fixed deposits TDS certificate issued by banks and others. Form 26AS This Form is a summary of taxes deducted and taxes paid by you. The Income Tax Department provides this. It shows tax deducted on your behalf by deductors, tax deposited by taxpayers, and tax refunds received in the financial year. This form can be accessed from the website of IT Department’s. Section 80 Investments Section 80C investment documents. The investments made under PPF, NSC, ULIPS, ELSS, LIC qualify for deduction under section 80C. Ensure you have the slips, receipts of all the investment made for tax-saving purposes. Also, these documents should be stored for a couple of years for the safe side. Documents needed to Claim the following deductions Keep these documents handy to claim the following expenses as deductions:- Your input to a Provident Fund Premium amount payment of Life insurance school tuition fees of children Principal Repayment on your home loan Stamp duty and registration charges The maximum amount that can be claimed under section 80C is INR 1.5 lakhs. Equity Linked Savings Scheme/Mutual Funds investment Other Investment Documents Interest paid on housing loan The interest paid on a housing loan is eligible for tax savings up to INR 2,00,000. This is for a self-occupied house. There is no interest limit on a housing loan for a let-out house or deemed let-out property. From FY 2017-18, the total loss from house property is available for set off against other income is capped at INR 2 lakhs; therefore, interest on housing loan is eligible for tax savings up to INR 2,00,000 for a let-out property. Education loan interest payments Stock-trading statement Stock trades made during the year are taxed as Capital Gain. Documents needed for Income Tax Returns Filing The income tax return filed is an ‘annexure less’ return which means there is no to attach documents or proofs with the returns. The Income Tax Act prescribes obtaining certificates and proofs to claim deductions, making it ambiguous for the taxpayer to whom they must hand over those certificates and proofs. The taxpayers must store the certificates and receipts for future reference and need not attach or send them to anyone. If an assessing office sends a notice seeking for documents or clarification about the transactions mentioned in the returns, the taxpayer must submit the proofs to the AO. What are the essential documents required to file income tax returns? As stated above, income tax return documents are as per the earning source of the tax filer. But certain documents are mandatory for every taxpayer irrespective of income sources. Here is a list of such common income tax return documents that are required to file income tax returns: PAN Card This is the most important prerequisite for filing an income tax return. PAN is also required to deduct TDS. The PAN should be linked with the bank account for direct credit of income tax refund. The Income Tax Department issues it and a salaried employee can find the PAN number on a PAN Card, form 26AS, form 16, form 12BB, etc. However, as per the recent amendment by the Govt. taxpayers can also file the income tax return with their Aadhaar number instead of their PAN Number. Aadhaar Card Per Section 139AA of the Income Tax Act, individuals must provide their Aadhaar card details while filing the returns. If you do not have your Aadhaar card but have applied for the same, you must provide the enrolment ID in your IT returns. Linking PAN and Aadhaar helps in verifying the income tax return online through an OTP. Form 16 This form consists of the details of the employee’s salary and the amount of TDS deducted from the salary. Form 16 consists of two different parts, i.e., Part A and Part B. Part A contains the details of the amount of tax deducted by the employer during the financial year, along with the PAN and TAN details of the employer. The Part B of the form consists of TDS calculations like gross salary breakup, exempt allowances, perquisites, etc. Please note that Form 16 is issued by the employer. It is a vital document for filing income tax returns by a salaried individual. Form 16A/16B/16C Form 16A is issued for TDS deducted on payments other than salaries, such as income from recurring deposits, fixed deposits, etc. If a person sells his property, then Form 16B is issued. It has details about TDS deducted from the amount paid to the seller. Form 16C is a TDS certificate that reflects the TDS deducted on rent @ 5% by an individual or HUF under section 194IB. Deductors issue form 16A like the buyer issues banks, contractors, etc. Form 16B on the other hand. Further, a person deducting TDS on rent is required to furnish Form 16C to the payee within a period of 15 days from the date of furnishing the Challan cum statement in form 26QC. The details of TDS can be alternatively be fetched from you Form 26AS. Bank Account Details Disclosures of all active bank accounts is mandatory in the income tax return. Bank account details like your bank name, account number, IFSC and number of accounts you hold must be quoted in the income return. Also, one account shall be selected as primary to assist the Income Tax Department in refunding your tax refund by electronic transfer to such account. Bank details are used to check your income disclosures, high-volume transactions, etc. These details can be easily found in the bank passbooks- chequebooks, statements, net banking accounts, etc. Bank Statement/Passbook Bank statements show the information of the interest earned on a savings account, interest income on fixed deposits, etc during a financial year. This information is required for filing an income tax return. Form 26AS and AIS/TIS It is an annual tax statement like a tax passbook that has details of all the taxes deposited by you against your PAN. These include:- TDS deducted by the bank TDS deducted by the employer TDS deducted by the other organization from the payments done by you The individual should ensure that all the taxes deducted in the financial year are reflected against the PAN in Form -26AS. In case of a mismatch, you cannot claim the tax credit for the TDS deduction. Therefore, the same should be rectified by getting in touch with the deductor. You can view Form 26AS for relevant Assessment Year by signing into your account on the Income Tax India e-filling website. Recently, the Annual Information Statement (AIS) app has been launched for the taxpayers, allowing you to access all TDS, TCS, interest, etc, on one app. AIS is a comprehensive view of information for a taxpayer displayed in AIS. AIS shows both reported value and modified value under each section. TIS: Taxpayer Information Summary is an information category-wise aggregated information summary for a taxpayer. It shows processed value and derived value under each information category. The derived information in TIS will be used for prefilling of return, if applicable. Home Loan Statement The individuals are provided with the details like principal and interest that they reply in their loan statement. This breakup information is needed as a proof and to provide information while filing your income tax returns. If the individual has taken a home loan from financial institutions like banks, etc., then he /she should collect the statement for the last financial year. Tax Saving Instrument If you have invested in any tax saving schemes like tax saving, FDs, ELSS, investment receipts, etc., you should have the relevant documents ready when you file your taxes. Capital Gains Details If you have sold shares, securities or property, it will result in a capital gain or losses. For the same, you need to have documents like broker statements, property sale deeds, etc. Rental Income If you are earning an income from your house property, it should be reported while filing ITR. Also, in case you are paying rent, don’t forget to collect receipts from the landlord. However, these documents are not required to be given with the ITR but should be kept safe to be submitted to your employer or Income Tax Department in case required in the future. Foreign Income The documents for any income earned in or from a foreign country during deployment or for part of the year should be furnished with your tax consultant to help you claim the benefit of tax credits and DTAAhttps://incometaxindia.gov.in/Pages/utilities/Double-Taxation-Avoidance-Agreements.aspx. The documents for any foreign income need to be arranged with the employer or contractor. Dividend Income If you have invested in shares or mutual funds and have earned dividend income on the same, it should be reported while filing your income tax return. Details of dividends earned during the financial year can be taken from the broker’s statement or the Demat account summary. Conclusion As seen above, various documents are required for filing Income Tax Return. Assembling documents is one of the most important steps for filing an income tax return. Having proper documents will enable you to properly file the income tax returns.