You can claim an income tax refund when excess TDS or TCS is deducted, you overpay advance tax, or self-assessment tax, or if you have unused tax credits. Based on these options, it can be categorised either as:

  • Refund due to excess tax payment: When tax paid is higher than actual liability

  • Refund due to excess deduction: When tax deducted is higher than the actual liability


Knowing how to claim and check your income tax refund status is crucial. It will help you better plan and manage your finances and optimise your filing strategies. 

Documents Required to Claim Income Tax Refund

To claim an income tax refund, you need to fulfil the following requirements:

  • File ITR for the relevant assessment year

  • Have accurate details of the tax payments made during the assessment year

  • Have proof of TDS or advance tax payments 

  • Furnish details of a valid bank account to receive the refund


Given this, you must have the following documents to start the tax refund process:

Type

Form

Tax payment

Form 26AS, ITR V

Tax deduction  

Form 16

Bank details

Bank statement

How to Check Income Tax Refund Status Online

To check your ITR refund status, follow these steps:

  1. Visit the official income tax e-filing website

  2. Log in to your account using your PAN and password

  3. Go to ‘e-File’ 🡪 ‘Income Tax Returns’ 🡪 ‘View Filed Returns’ 

  4. Select the relevant assessment year 

  5. Click on the 'View Details' to know the refund status on applicable income tax 

 

There are other ways to check your income tax refund status. Some of the most common ways include:

  • Through the TIN NSDL (Tax Information Network National Securities Depository Limited) website

  • Through the mobile app provided by the tax authorities

  • By calling the toll-free number of the tax department’s customer care

How to Claim Income Tax Refund

One prerequisite to claim your ITR refund or TDS refund is to file your income tax. Upon entering all the details to file your return, you will see the refund receivable, if any, at the end. 

 

Once you submit and verify the return, it will be processed, and the refund will be transferred or adjusted. 

 

To file your ITR and be eligible for a tax refund, if any, follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your account on the e-filing portal

  2. Navigate to ‘e-File’ → ‘Income Tax Returns’ → ‘File Income Tax Return’

  3. Choose the ‘Assessment Year’ and mode of filing

  4. Click ‘Start New Filing’ or choose a draft, if any

  5. Select your status and ITR type 

  6. Choose the reason to file your ITR

  7. Validate your pre-filled details

  8. Submit and e-verify your return

Frequently Asked Questions

When can I file an income tax return?

You can file an income tax return if your income during the financial year exceeds the specified exemption limit. You will also have to file your ITR if you are required to as per the Income Tax Act, 1961.

Is filing an income tax return mandatory even if my income is below the threshold limit?

No, filing an income tax return is not required if your income is below the specified exemption limit.

What happens if I miss the income tax return filing deadline?

If you miss the income tax return filing deadline, you can still file a belated return within a specified time frame. However, you may have to pay the penalty and interest, if any, on any outstanding tax liabilities.

How long does receiving an income tax refund take after filing the return?

After you file your ITR, it typically takes around 4-5 weeks for the refund to be processed and transferred to your account. However, you must ensure that all the details provided are accurate and that there are no discrepancies.

Why is my income tax refund delayed?

Your tax refund may be delayed due to several reasons, such as incorrect details, discrepancies in tax filing, delay in processing, or technical issues. You can check the income tax refund status and details by logging in to your account on the e-filing portal. Here, you can also get details regarding your income tax TDS refund status.

How is the interest on income tax refund calculated?

You will receive a simple interest at 0.5% per month if your refund is more than 10% of the total tax payable. Interest accrues from the start of the next financial year, i.e., 1st of April, until the refund date.

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