How to File Zero Income Tax Return Online in India

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Many people fall under the 2.5L per annum salary bracket and don’t know how to file zero income tax return online. This post covers this question.

So let’s Say Your Career Just Started or Your Income Is Less than Rs 2.5 Lakhs per Annum or You Resigned from Your Job or Unfortunately You Lost Your Job.

Then a Question Will Come to Your Mind That Is It Necessary to File an Income Tax Return? or Why Should I File a Nil/Zero Income Tax Return, and If I Need to File ITR Then How Can I Do It?.

That’s What We Are Going to Discuss Today.

So Let’s Get Started.

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What Is a Zero Income Tax Return?

A Nil/Zero Income Tax Return Is Filed to Show the Income Tax Department that You Fall below the Taxable Income and Do Not Need to Pay Taxes in This Year.

Why Should You File Zero Income Tax Return?

Here are 3 reasons why You Should Do it:

  • As Your Income Proof: When You Go to Apply for a Loan, You Will Need to Show Some Proof of Your Income and Income Tax Return Will Serve as Your Income Proof. It Will Also Help When You File an Application for a Passport or Visa.
  • To Claim a TDS Refund: Sometimes Bank Deducts Tds(Tax Deducted at Source) on Interest Earned over ₹ 10,000. Interest Can Be of Your Saving Accounts or Any Deposits with Your Bank. So If You Are below the Taxable Income Limit Then You Can File Nil Income Tax Return to Get a Refund of That Tds.
  • To Carry Forward Your Losses: If You Are Investor or Trader in Stock Market and If You Face Some Loss Then You Can Balance that against Your Gains With Your Income Tax Return.

Is It Compulsory to File Zero Income Tax Return as an Individual?

If Your Income Is More than ₹ 2,50,000 Then Yes, It Is Compulsory to File an Income Tax Return. You Can Claim Some Deduction to Keep Your Income below Taxable Limit.

And If Your Income Is Less than ₹ 2,50,000 Then It Is Not Compulsory to File Income Tax Return but It Is Good Practice to File It. I Recommend that You File an Income Tax Return as There Are Great Benefits to Do So.

Do I Have to File Nil Income Tax Return for a Company?

Yes, You Have to File a Nil Return for Your Company, Even If There Is No Revenue or Activity in the Company.

How to File Zero Income Tax Return Online?

The Process of Filling a Nil ITR Is the Same as Filing a Regular ITR. You Can File a Nil ITR Online through E-filing. And You Can Also E-file Your ITR Using the Upload XML Method.

how to file zero income tax return online

How to File Zero Income Tax Return Online – Income Tax Filing

Below are a few steps on how to file zero income tax return online:

  1. Go to the Income Tax e-Filing portal –  www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in
  2. Log in to the e-Filing portal by entering user ID (PAN), Password, Captcha code and click ‘Login’.
  3. Click on the ‘e-File’ menu and click the ‘Income Tax Return’ link.
  4. On Income Tax Return Page:
    • PAN will be auto-populated
    • Select ‘Assessment Year’
    • Select ‘ITR Form Number’
    • Select ‘Filing Type’ as ‘Original/Revised Return’
    • Select ‘Submission Mode’ as ‘Prepare and Submit Online’
  5. Click on ‘Continue’
  6. Read the instructions carefully
  7. Fill in all the applicable and mandatory fields of the Online ITR Form.
    • Note: To avoid loss of data/rework due to session time out, Click on the ‘Save Draft’ button periodically to save the entered ITR details as a draft. The saved draft will be available for 30 days from the date of saving or till the date of filing the return or till there is no change in the XML schema of the notified ITR (Whichever is earlier).
  8. If You Filled Everything Correctly Your Amount Payable will show 0 on ‘Taxes Paid and Verification’ tab.
  9. Choose the appropriate Verification option in the ‘Taxes Paid and Verification’ tab. Choose any one of the following option to verify the Income Tax Return:
    • I would like to e-Verify
    • I would like to e-Verify later within 120 days from the date of filing.
    • I don’t want to e-Verify and would like to send signed ITR-V through normal or speed post to “Centralized Processing Center, Income Tax Department, Bengaluru – 560 500” within 120 days from date of filing.
  10. Click on the ‘Preview and Submit’ button, Verify all the data entered in the ITR.
  11. ‘Submit’ the ITR.
    • On Choosing the ‘I would like to e-Verify’ option, e-Verification can be done through any of the following methods by entering the EVC/OTP when asked for.
      • EVC generated through bank ATM or Generate EVC option under My Account
      • Aadhaar OTP
      • Prevalidated Bank Account
      • Prevalidated Demat Account
      • Note: Choosing the other two verification options, the ITR will be submitted but the process of filing the ITRs is not complete until it is verified. The submitted ITR should be e-Verified later by using the ‘My Account > e-Verify Return’ option or the signed ITR-V should be sent to CPC, Bengaluru.
    • The EVC/OTP should be entered within 60 seconds else, the Income Tax Return (ITR) will be auto-submitted. The submitted ITR should be verified later by using the ‘My Account > e-Verify Return’ option or by sending signed ITR-V to CPC.
  12. Verify Your E-Return And It’s Done.

Now that you have understood how to file zero income tax return online.

Let’s now proceed to understand how to file it offline

To E-file the ITR Using the Upload Xml Method, the User Must Download either of the Following ITR Utility:

  • Excel Utility
  • Java Utility

Perform the following steps to download the Java Utility or Excel Utility, then to generate and Upload the XML:

  1. Go to the Income Tax e-Filing portal www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in
  2. Download the Appropriate ITR utility under ‘Downloads > IT Return Preparation Software’.
  3. Extract the downloaded utility ZIP file and Open the Utility from the extracted folder. (For more information and prerequisites, refer to the ‘Read me’ document).
    Note: System Requirements
    Excel Utilities: Macro enabled MS-Office Excel version 2007/2010/2013 on Microsoft Windows 7 / 8 /10 with .Net Framework (3.5 & above)
    Java Utilities: Microsoft Windows 7/8/10, Linux and Mac OS 10.x with JRE (Java Runtime Environment) Version 8 with latest updates.
    To Enable Macros in Excel Go to > File > Options > Trust Centre > Trust Centre Settings > Macro Settings > Enable All Macro > Click ‘OK’ button twice to save these settings.
  4. Fill in the applicable and mandatory fields of the ITR form.
    Note: Pre-filled XML can be downloaded post login to the e-Filing portal from ‘My Account > Download Pre-Filled XML’ and can be imported to the utility for prefilling the personal and other available details.
  5. Validate all the tabs of the ITR form and Calculate the Tax.
  6. Generate and Save the XML.
  7. Log in to the e-Filing portal by entering user ID (PAN), Password, Captcha code and click ‘Login’.
  8. Click on the ‘e-File’ menu and click the ‘Income Tax Return’ link.
  9. On Income Tax Return Page:
    • PAN will be auto-populated
    • Select ‘Assessment Year’
    • Select ‘ITR form Number’
    • Select ‘Filing Type’ as ‘Original/Revised Return’
    • Select ‘Submission Mode’ as ‘Upload XML’
  10. Choose any one of the following option to verify the Income Tax Return:
    • Digital Signature Certificate (DSC).
    • Aadhaar OTP.
    • EVC using Prevalidated Bank Account Details.
    • EVC using Prevalidated Demat Account Details.
    • Already generated EVC through My Account  Generate EVC Option or Bank ATM. The validity of such EVC is 72 hours from the time of generation.
    • I would like to e-Verify later. Please remind me.
    • I don’t want to e-verify this Income Tax Return and would like to send signed ITR-V through normal or speed post to “Centralized Processing Center, Income Tax Department, Bengaluru – 560500”
  11. Click ‘Continue’
  12. Attach the ITR XML file.
    On choosing,
    • DSC as verification option, Attach the signature file generated from DSC management utility.
    • Aadhaar OTP as verification option, Enter the Aadhaar OTP received in the mobile number registered with UIDAI.
    • EVC through Bank account, Demat account, or Bank ATM as verification option, Enter the EVC received in the mobile number registered with Bank or Demat Account respectively.
    • Other two verification options, the ITR will be submitted but the process of filing the ITRs is not complete until it is verified. The submitted ITR should be e-Verified later by using the ‘My Account > e-Verify Return’ option or the signed ITR-V should be sent to CPC, Bengaluru.
  13. Submit the ITR.

 

How to Download ITR Acknowledgement

  1. Go to the Income Tax e-Filing portal, www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in
  2. Login to e-Filing portal by entering user ID (PAN), Password, Captcha code and click ‘Login’.
  3. Click on the ‘My Account’ menu and click the ‘View e-Filed Return/Forms’ link.
  4. PAN will be auto-populated. Select Income Tax Returns From The Dropdown.
  5. Click On the Acknowledgement Number of Desired Year.
  6. Select “ITR-V/ Acknowledgement” From Download Section for ITR Acknowledgement and “ITR/Forms” to Download Your Filed Income Tax Return.

How to File Income Tax Return Online for Salaried Employee

The short video below explains how a salaried person can file his own income tax return in new ITR 1 form for the AY 2020-21 (FY 2020-21) with the help of a detailed form 16.

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After watching this video you will able to know :
How to file an Income tax return?
How to file an Income tax return for a salaried person?
How to Quick file ITR 1 Online in India?
How to use form 16 for filling ITR 1?
How to use form 16 for filling income tax return?
How to give salary break up in ITR? Salary details as per ITR 1?
Assessment Year 2020-21 Financial Year 2020-21
How to file an Income tax return for a salaried person online?
How to file Income tax return online in India for salaried employees for AY 2020-21?
How to get TDS refund? How to claim the standard deduction?
Can I file ITR 1 AY 2020-21 online?
How to file ITR 1?
How to claim house rent allowance ( HRA)?
How to claim deductions u/s 80 C?
How can I file my income tax return online for AY 2020-21?
ITR 1 for FY 2020-21 is for salaried individuals?
How to show saving bank interest and claim deduction u/s 80 TTA?
How to reduce your tax liability by using deduction?

(Above excerpt taken from the video description)

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Conclusion

So If You Are Thinking That Your Income Is below the Tax Limit and You Don’t Want to File Income Tax Return Then by Now.

You Should Change that and File Your Nil Income Tax Right Now as There Are More Advantages to Do So. And Don’t Make Excuse like “It’s Hard” as I Have Shown You a Detailed Step by Step Guide on How to File Zero Income Tax Return Online.

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Om Patel

Om Patel

Om Patel of The Wealth Blog writes about Personal Wealth, Investing, and every other aspect of Finance that makes people financially independent.
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