An Income Tax Return (ITR) statement contains the different incomes that you have earned during a financial year. It also states the amount of tax you need to pay during an assessment year.


Your duty as a taxpayer does not just end with paying your taxes on time. There are other requirements that you would have to comply with as well. One such requirement is the filing of Income Tax Returns (ITRs). This process needs to be done annually. Remember, non-filing of income tax returns can result in a heavy penalty.

When Should You File Income Tax (IT) Returns

 You need to file ITR:

  • If you are an individual whose gross annual income exceeds ₹2.5 Lakhs in a year

  • If you are above 60 years but less than 80 years earning a total income of ₹3 Lakhs in a year

  • If you are above 80 years with a gross annual income exceeding ₹5 Lakhs in a year

  • If you want to claim a refund

  • If you have generated income from foreign investments during a specific financial year

  • If you are a firm or a company, irrespective of making profits or losses

  • If your business turnover exceeds ₹60 Lakhs

  • If your total income from your profession exceeds ₹10 Lakhs

  • If you have an amount of ₹50 Lakhs in your savings bank account

  • If you have utilised more than ₹2 Lakhs on foreign travel

  • If your annual electricity expenses exceed ₹1 Lakh

  • If your tax withheld as TCS or TDS exceeds ₹25,000 in the case of non-senior citizens and ₹50,000 for senior citizens

What are the Different Types of Income Tax Return Forms?

The IT Department of India mandates taxpayers to fill 7 types of ITR forms based on the amount and nature of income. Here is a quick look at the various types of ITRs that can be filed.

ITR Form

Applicable For

Types of Income Governed by the ITR


Resident Individuals

Income from pension or salary, one house property, and other sources not exceeding ₹50 Lakhs


All individuals

Income from salary or pension, more than one house property, capital gains, foreign income, and other sources exceeding ₹50 Lakhs


All individuals

All of the incomes under ITR 2 plus income from business or profession, income from being a partner in a firm, and presumptive income exceeding ₹50 Lakhs


Resident individuals and HUFs

Presumptive income from salary or pension, one house property, and other sources not exceeding ₹50 Lakhs


Partnership firms, LLPs, AOPs, and BOIs

All incomes


Companies not claiming any exemptions under Section 11 of the IT Act

All incomes


Individuals and companies falling under:

  • Section 139 (4A)
  • Section 139 (4B)
  • Section 139 (4C)
  • Section 139 (4D)

All types of incomes included under the specified sections of the Income Tax Act.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many types of income tax return forms are there?

There are four different types of income tax return forms - ITR 1, ITR 2, ITR 3, and ITR 4 for individuals. Remember, ITR that you need to file for yourself will be dependent on the kind of income that you generate.

I am a salaried person with no other income. Which ITR should I file?

If you are an individual with no income except for income from salaries, you have to file ITR 1.

Is filing an income tax return online the same as getting an income tax refund?

No. Income tax returns are basically just statements of all the income that you have earned during a financial year, which you are required to file with the Income Tax authorities. An income tax refund is when the authorities refund the excess income tax that you have paid. 

This refund is only done after you complete your individual income tax return filing on time and within the due date.

What happens if I do not file my ITR on time?

If you do not complete your IT return filing within the due date, you will have to pay a penalty ranging from ₹1,000 to up to ₹5,000. Also, you will not be able to carry over any of the current year’s losses to the next year and set it off against the next year’s income.

Can I file my ITR online?

Yes. Many individuals prefer to do income tax filing online due to the entire process being very simple and straightforward. It takes only a few minutes to complete and can be done from the comfort of your home.

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