Belated Return u/s 139(4): Applicability, Fines, and Process

In India, taxpayers are required to submit their financial data to the government by the specified due date each year during the Income Tax Return (ITR) filing season. The deadline for filing an ITR was scheduled for July 31, 2023, for the financial year 2022–2023 (Assessment year 2023-2024). Failure to comply with this deadline may result in penalties and other consequences. However, even if you missed the deadline, everything is not lost. You can still file a belated return, but it’s important to understand the procedure and results. If a taxpayer misses the original due date, they will have to file a belated return and pay their tax liabilities till December 31, 2023. For people and businesses that, for a variety of reasons, were unable to file their taxes by the deadline, this extension is a great respite.

Belated Return u/s 139(4): Applicability, Fines, and Process

Table of Contents

What is a Belated Return?

An income tax return that was filed beyond the original due date is known as a belated ITR. The original due date for filing an ITR in India is July 31 of the assessment year. The assessment year for the financial year 2022–2023 would be 2023–2024. You can file a late return if you were unable to file your ITR by the deadline.

Who can File Belated Return u/s 139(4)?

Under the following conditions, filing an income tax return is required: 

  • If a person’s total income exceeds Rs. 250,000.
  • During a financial year, you have deposited more than Rs. 1 crore into a current account which you hold with a bank or cooperative bank.
  • In the relevant year, if you have spent more than 2 lakhs on trip outside India.
  • You’ve paid more than one lakh rupees for electricity.

To put it simply, an assessee may file a delayed return if they are due to file an ITR but choose not to. Section 139(4) must be chosen when filing the ITR.

What are the Consequences of Late ITR Filing?

You may be liable to the following fines if you don’t file your ITR before the deadline.

Delay in Refunds

If you are entitled to the receipt of any refund and you file your return after the deadline can cause a delay.

Interest Penalty u/s 234A

For a delayed ITR filing under section 234A, the taxpayer is required to pay simple interest at the rate of 1% per month, or a part of it. From the ITR filing date date to the actual filing date, interest is calculated. As a result, you will pay more interest the longer you delay to file your ITR.

Late Filing Fees 234F

Under Section 234F, the maximum late filing penalty is Rs. 5000.
  • A penalty of Rs. 5,000 is imposed if the taxable income for the year exceeds Rs. 5 lakh.
  • A penalty of Rs. 1000 is imposed if the taxable income for the year is less than Rs. 5 lakhs.
  • Additionally, there is no penalty if the total taxable income is less than Rs. 2.5 lakhs.

How to File a Belated Return?

Follow these steps if you need to file a belated ITR after missing the deadline:

Collect the financial Information: Gather all necessary financial documentation, such as your Form 16 and bank statements and investment information.

Go to the Income Tax Portal: Visit the official Income Tax e-filing website in and sign in if you are already registered or register if you are new on this portal.

Select the correct ITR Form: Select the appropriate ITR form based on your income sources and the nature of your income.

Complete ITR form: Fill out the ITR form accurately with information about the money you earn, deductions, and tax payable

Payment of Tax due: Calculate the amount of any tax liabilities you may have and go to the portal to make an online payment.

Submission and Verification: Submit the form on the portal after filling it out. You will receive a confirmation in the form of an ITR-V (Verification), which requires e-verification using Aadhaar or a bank OTP.

Records: For future reference, save copies of all documents and acknowledgments.


It is possible to submit a late ITR beyond the deadline of July 31, 2023, but it’s important to be aware of the penalties, interest, and potential loss of benefits that go along with it. Taxpayers should really make an effort to file their ITRs before to the deadline in order to avoid these consequences. However, if you’ve missed the deadline, take fast action to file your late return and, to the best of your abilities, fulfil your tax responsibilities.

You can also read Compulsory Registration Under GST.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

A return that is filed after the first deadline of July 31 but before the second deadline of December 31 of the assessment year is referred to as a belated return. Even while there are consequences for filing after the deadline, it’s still preferable not to face fines for non-compliance.

A belated return may be filed on or before December 31st of the relevant assessment year if you failed to file your ITR for prior years. For instance, in the event that income tax authorities do not finish the assessment on their own, the deadline for filing a delayed return for the AY 2023–2024 is on or before December 31, 2023.

You can file a belated return by December 31, 2024, if you fail to file your ITR before the deadline. Nevertheless, you must pay the late filing penalty. You will be assessed a maximum penalty of Rs 5,000 if you file your ITR after July 31, 2024, but before December 31, 2024.

There is no restriction on the number of times you can file an amended tax return; you can do so as often as you like. There is no way to file a revised income tax return if the assessing officer completes the assessment of your return in accordance with Section 143-(3) of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

If you failed to file your last two ITRs, you can, in fact, file an ITR-U. You can file your normal ITR for the current year.

1 thought on “Belated Return u/s 139(4): Applicability, Fines, and Process”

Leave a Comment

Top Healthcare Stocks in India – 2024 Benefits of PMFME Loan for Food Business Best Hydrogen Penny Stocks India in 2024