If HRA is not mentioned in FORM 16 and tax is already filed and …

  • Hello There, I am in the Taxation & Personal Finance industry for the last 10 years & haven’t heard of this : “HRA benefit letter”

    In my honest opinion, I believe there is nothing like it.

    If I have to rephrase your question as : “If HRA is not mentioned in FORM 16 and tax is already filed and paid how can one claim the tax benefit on HRA ?”

    So, If you see your payslip & see “HRA” or “House Rent Allowance” on the earnings side, you can claim the HRA benefit. If you DO NOT see, you cannot claim.

    Second, If HRA dosen’t figure up on your Form-16, you can still claim the tax benefit while filing your personal income tax returns, provided you satisfy the first condition. In this case, you may be eligible for a tax refund or lower tax depending on your income sources.

    Third, If you forgot/failed to claim the tax benefit of HRA while filing tax returns, you can still file a revised return – conditions apply – Check the fine prints of filing revised returns.

    My 0.02$


    The first condition- If HRA is not mentioned in Form 16

    House Rent Allowance (HRA) is an essential component of one’s salary which unlike other components is not fully taxable. Individuals receiving House Rent allowance and staying in a rented accommodation can avail tax exemption benefit u/s 10(13A) of the Income Tax Act.

    However, (if it is not there in the form 16) one can claim one’s HRA exemption. An employee is entitle get HRA exemption benefits even if he/she is not being paid by the employer but resides in a rented accommodation. If case goes in scrutiny, the relevant person will be required to file original HRA documents to the department.

    The second Condition- Tax has already been filed and paid, how one can claim the HRA benefits later from Income Tax Department?

    If one forgets/fails to claim the tax benefit of HRA exemption while filing tax returns, one can still file a revised return but only within the assessment year immediately following the financial year for which the return is filed.

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    Simple answer is

    You can claim HRA examption , whether or not Form 16 shows or not even allowed by your department.

    Only important point is that the condition for claim of HRA is satisfied.

    Claim in your return.

    If forgot, and one year has not passed file , a revised return.

    If the exemption towards HRA has not been considered in Form 16, then while filling the income tax return you may claim HRA exemption. However, there is risk of getting notice from tax department that why such HRA exemption was not considered in Form 16. You need to have proper documentation and explanation to support your claim.

    In order to claim a deduction from HRA first of all you need to have an HRA component in your salary. If you do have said component, and you are actually paying rent, then you need to claim the HRA deduction in your income tax return.

    Be prepared to receive a limited scrutiny notice because the computer would flag this as being different from the Form 16 and therefore from the ETDS return filed by your employer.

    Hence have all necessary documentation such as the rent agreeement, rent receipts, mode of payment i.e. preferably through your bank account and PAN of your landlord readily available for verification if required.


    House Rent Allowance (HRA) is an essential component of an individual’s salary which unlike other components are not fully taxable. Individuals receiving House Rent allowance and stays in a rented accommodation can avail tax exemption benefit u/s 10(13A) of the Income Tax Act. If an individual is staying in his/her own house, he/she won’t be eligible to claim exemptions.

    Details of House Rent paid (rent receipts / PAN number of the Landlord) needs to be shared with the employer who will consider the same to compute the tax liability of the employee.

    Even if employer fails to provide HRA exemption benefits and thereby deducted higher tax as TDS, the assessee can still avail benefit of HRA exemption at the time of filing of return and claim refund of such excess tax deducted.

    In such case, assessee file may come under scrutiny, since income from salary as reported in income tax return will not reconcile with income from salary as per Form 16 (details of income as reported by the employer) to the extent of HRA tax benefit claimed by the assessee. The assessee just need to produced the documents for claiming HRA deduction with the income tax department and can close the scrutiny proceeding very comfortably.

    Please note the HRA exemption available for your reference:

    As per Section 10(13A), least of the following is an exempted HRA:

    i) Actual HRA received

    ii) 50% of salary if living in metro cities, or 40% for non-metro cities; and

    iii) Excess of rent paid over 10% of annual salary

    Note – Salary includes Basic + Dearness Allowance

    The form no. 16 is a statement of tax deducted by your employer from the salaries paid to you. It also contains prima facie details of your taxable salary based on the documents submitted to the employer.

    Please note that the form No. 16 is not final conclusive document of a particular amount being taxable or otherwise.

    So in case you have ready paid rent and are thus entitled to claim the benefit of HRA, you can claim the same while filing your income tax return.

    Please note that though you are not allowed to submit or attach any proof for such claim, it is always advisable to preserve such documents for rent paid to that you can produce the same in case your case in selected for sample scrutiny later on.

    What I can understand from you query is that your employer has not given you benefit of HRA and therefore in Form No. 16 the deduction towards HRA is not mentioned. If that is the case you can always claim HRA benefit by filing your return of income and if you have already filed you income tax return without claiming HRA benefit u/s 10(13A) of the I.T.Act, you can revise your return by claiming benefit of HRA provided you have filed your original return within the time allowed i.e. by 31st July, of the relevant assessment year.

    As per your query, If you haven’t filed ITR yet, then you can claim the HRA, subject to the conditions prescribed in section 10(13A) of Invome Tax Act, 1961.

    Further, if you have filed the ITR, then you have to file the revised return to claim the same.

    I read your link. File for an extension by July 15. There’s no way you are going to learn to do these in just a couple of days. This is an extension of time to file, not to pay. Even if you end up not owing any income tax, you’ll owe self-employment tax. Read the instructions for home office and car expenses. If you use your car less than 50% for business, you MUST use the mileage method. Look at the rules for depreciation vs. section 179 or bonus depreciation. You are going to have to spend time or money to get this done. You will have a very hard time finding anyone to help you between now and Wednesday.

    Yes, there may be a possibility to do so. Because, prior to FY 2018–19, the salary, perquisites, allowances etc., which are mentioned in Form 16 (Part-B) were manually provided by the employers to the employees. Now, the govt. has changed the system of generating Form 16.

    Both the parts of Form 16 i.e., Part-A & Part-B have to be generated online and downloaded from TRACES. For implementing this, the govt. has also modified 24Q (Statement of TDS on salaries) to enable the employer to enter every detail of salary, allowances, perquisites etc.

    So, the govt. will now have the information provided by the employer in 24Q and information provided by the employee in ITR. If there is any discrepancy found in the ITR, then the Income Tax Department may come into picture.

    So, there’s a possibility to scrutinize the fake HRA claims.

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