Identify your existing investments and expenses before putting more money to save taxes
Have different tax planning strategies when you are single, married, nearing retirement or are retired
If your HR department hasn’t already given you a deadline to declare your tax-saving investments meant for financial year 2019-20, it’s only a matter of time before it does. Based on the details you submit, your employer will calculate your estimated tax liability for the year and, accordingly, deduct tax (tax deducted at source or TDS) from your monthly salary. So if you don’t want to pay more tax each month than what’s due, take the deadline seriously.
If you are in the highest tax bracket of 31.2%, including cess, you can save up to Rs54,600 in income-tax just by claiming deduction under the most popular Sections 80C and 80D of the Income-tax Act, 1961. Together these two Sections offer a total deduction of at least Rs1.75 lakh.
But remember not to fill up the form in haste because tax saving should be incidental to financial planning and not the other way around. In fact, if you take stock of your finances closely, you may find that you are already incurring certain expenses or investments that help you save tax under the two popular income-tax Sections mentioned earlier.
These investments and expenses are, typically, different for every age group and life stage. For instance, a married person with children may be nearly exhausting the ₹1.5 lakh investment limit under Section 80C by contributing towards Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) and paying for his child’s tuition fees. On the other hand, a retired person may not have any of the two mentioned above, and would need to invest substantially in other instruments to exhaust the limit. Similarly, for a young, single person, investing aggressively in equities makes sense and tax-saving equity-linked savings schemes are suitable instruments for that, but not for a person nearing retirement, who should be midful of asset allocation.
We help you identify investments and expenses as per your life stage and tell you how you can fill the gaps if you are single, married, someone approaching retirement or if you are already retired.