How to Get Return Filing Date Extension as Per Law?

The last date for filing an income tax return is talk of the town. The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has made it clear that it will not extend the date for filing income tax returns for the tax year 2021 beyond September 30, 2021.

Although stakeholders are persuading the FBR to extend the date for filing the income tax return because of many irritants on the online return filing portal.

Just imagine… the FBR decides not to extend the last date for filing income tax returns. What will happen? Many people, who are unable to file their income tax returns and statement of wealth by the due date, will face fines and penalties for late filing.

Besides they will also not be able to get their names on the Active Taxpayers List (ATL), which is the key document for availing reduced rates of withholding tax and other benefits.

It’s only three days left for the expiry date for filing income tax returns for the tax year 2021. Those who have planned to file their returns but they believe that the remaining days are not sufficient to make compliance then they should prepare themselves for taking help from tax laws for availing date extension.

The FBR usually makes the announcement for a date extension on the last moment of the last day for making compliance. Those who want to file their returns and it was difficult for them to file by the due date then they should not wait for the announcement and submit the application before the Commissioner Inland Revenue for an extension.

Through this application, taxpayers can get an extension legally for filing tax returns.

A procedure to get an extension for filing the income tax return has been explained in Section 119 of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001.

Following is the text of Section 119 of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001:

119. Extension of time for furnishing returns and other documents.— (1) A person required to furnish —

 (a) a return of income under section 114 or 117;

(d) a wealth statement under section 116,

may apply, in writing, to the Commissioner for an extension of time to furnish the return, or statement, as the case may be.

(2) An application under sub-section (1) shall be made by the due date for furnishing the return of income, or statement to which the application relates.

(3) Where an application has been made under sub-section (1) and the Commissioner is satisfied that the applicant is unable to furnish the return of income, or statement to which the application relates by the due date because of —

(a) absence from Pakistan;

(b) sickness or other misadventure; or

(c) any other reasonable cause,

the Commissioner may, by order, in writing, grant the applicant an extension of time for furnishing the return, or statement, as the case may be.

(4) An extension of time under sub-section (3) should not exceed fifteen days from the due date for furnishing the return of income, employer’s certificate, or statement, as the case may be, unless there are exceptional circumstances justifying a longer extension of time:

Provided that where the Commissioner has not granted extension for furnishing return under sub-section (3) or sub-section (4), the Chief Commissioner may on an application made by the taxpayer for extension or further extension, as the case may be, grant extension or further extension for a period not exceeding fifteen days unless there are exceptional circumstances justifying a longer extension of time.

(6) An extension of time granted under sub-section (3) shall not, for the purpose of charge of default surcharge under sub-section (1) of section 205, change the due date for payment of income tax under section 137.

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