Home / Money / Personal Finance /  Income tax return (ITR) filing for AY 2019-20: A do-it-yourself guide

Have you filed your income tax return for FY 2018-19 (AY 2019-20)? FY is the year in which you earn the income, while AY is the year in which you assess your income and file your return. As of now, the deadline for filing ITR for FY 2018-19 is July 31. Avoid the last-minute rush which can lead to mistakes. About 1.10 crore new filers were added during 2018-19 financial year while the income tax department is looking at a higher target for this year: 1.3 crore new filers. Not only you can file your income tax return online but also keep a track of your refunds and processing of returns online.

Here is a step-by-step guide on ITR filing for FY 2018-19:

1) The first step is to organize documents so that you fill the right details. Apart from basic details like PAN, Aadhaar, bank account and salary income, keep other documents showing capital gains/losses, rental income, divided income if you have other income sources as well.

"Before you file, keep all your documents handy. Maintain tax proofs properly. Keep them safe after you have filled out the form online - they will be needed if an assessment officer asks for proofs," says Archit Gupta, founder and CEO of ClearTax.

2) If you are a first-time filer, you need to create an account on the ITR e-filing website ( Once you have all the documents handy, the next step is to login to your e-filing account on the income tax department’s website.

3) Once you login to your ITR e-filing account, click on the “Filing of income tax return" on the dashboard. Then, choose the assessment year (AY) for which you want to file the ITR. The current AY is 2019-20 where you file returns for financial year (FY) 2018-19.

4) The next step is choosing the appropriate ITR form. From this year, you will have more details pre-filled in your ITR forms. Tax experts say that you should verify them before submitting it. “Prefilled XML is available for ITR 1, 2, 3 and 4 for AY 2019-20," the Income Tax department said in a note.

5) Besides selecting the right ITR form, ensure you fill in the correct details. If you file the return in the wrong ITR form, it may be considered invalid. ITR-1 is meant for assessees whose primary source of income is salary. It can be used by individuals having income from salaries, one house property, other sources (interest etc.) and total income from all sources does not exceed 50 lakh. ITR-2 can be used by individuals and HUFs not having income from profits and gains of business or profession. ITR-3 is for individuals and HUFs having income from profits and gains of business or profession.

"Verify your Form 26AS. Remember to include all the incomes that correspond to a TDS in your Form 26AS. Make sure you claim all the deductions you are eligible for," Archit Gupta of ClearTax adds.

Form 26AS is basically a consolidated tax credit statement that has all details of various taxes deducted on your income at source. You can access Form 26AS from the tax department’s website.

6) After filing your tax return, you need to verify it. Your returns are processed only after it is verified. There is a window of 120 days from the date of uploading the return. You can e-verify your return using an Aadhaar OTP or net-banking. Else, you can download the ITR acknowledgement ( ITR V) and send a signed copy of ITR-V to the tax department’s Central Processing Center, Bengaluru.

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