No More Faking Of Rent Receipts To Claim HRA
If you have been producing fake rent receipts to reduce the tax burden and escape up to 60% of HRA amount, there is a bad news for you. You may no longer be able to claim income tax deductions for house rent allowance (HRA) by fabricating fake bills.
The taxman may now insist on proof from you showing that you are a genuine tenant, staying in the property mentioned in the rent receipt.
According to a report in Economic Times, Dilip Lakhani, senior tax advisor, Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP said, “The ITAT (Income Tax Appellate Tribunal) ruling has now laid down the criteria for the assessing officer to consider the claim of a salaried employee and if necessary question its justification. This will put the onus on the salaried class to follow the rules in availing the tax rebate.”
The assessing officer can now demand proof, such as leave and licence agreement, letter to the housing co-operative society informing about the tenancy, electricity bill or water bill if he suspects the rent receipts are fake, according to a recent tribunal ruling. Till now, to avail of the benefit, the PAN of the owner of the residence was needed in case the rent is above Rs 1 lakh per annum. But now the official can ask for proof even if it is below Rs 1 lakh and the burden of proof will be on the employee who submits the rent receipt. The ruling by the Mumbai tax tribunal is likely to set a precedent and the salaried class is likely to come under the scanner on this count, the report said.
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