Paying Rent over Rs 50,000? Here Are the Rules for Deducting Tax

Individuals & HUF not liable to tax audit under the tax laws, were excluded from the obligation of withholding tax.

3 min read
Hindi Female

This article explains a recent Notification dated 8 June 2017, issued by the central government notifying the rules for withholding tax on rent payment exceeding Rs 50,000 to a resident by an individual or Hindu Undivided Family (HUF).

Prior to the amendment by the Finance Act 2017, the Indian tax laws required any person liable to pay rent to residents for use of any land/building exceeding an annual amount of Rs 1,80,000 to withhold tax at the rate of 10 percent.

However, individuals and HUF not liable to tax audit under the tax laws, were excluded from the obligation of withholding tax.

In order to widen the scope of withholding tax, Finance Act 2017 has introduced a new provision in the tax laws to provide that individuals or HUF (other than those liable for tax audit under the tax laws) responsible for paying to a resident, on or after 1 June 2017, any income by way of rent exceeding Rs 50,000 for a month or part of month during the tax year, shall deduct an amount equal to 5 percent of such income as income tax thereon.

In order to reduce the compliance burden, Finance Act 2017 provides that the deductor is not required to obtain a Tax Deduction Account Number (TAN) and is liable to deduct tax only once in a tax year.

The tax should be deducted at the time of credit or payment (whichever is earlier) of rent for the last month of the tax year or last month of the tenancy if the property is vacated during the year, as applicable.

Additionally, where the tax is required to be deducted at a higher rate in the absence of the Permanent Account Number (PAN) of the payee, such deduction is not to exceed the amount of rent payable for the last month of the tax year, or the last month of the tenancy, as the case may be.

In order to harmonise the new provision with the existing rules, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has amended the existing rules to provide for the time and mode of payment of tax deducted at source, to the central government account, as well as the manner in which the certificate of tax deducted at source and the statement of deduction of tax are to be furnished by the payer.

Individuals & HUF not liable to tax audit under the tax laws, were excluded from the obligation of withholding tax.
(Photo Courtesy: BloombergQuint)
The new provision which cast a tax deduction obligation on individual and HUF who are not liable for a tax audit, under the provisions of the tax laws, has come with effect from 1 June 2017.

Such payers will need to ensure withholding tax compliance on payment of rent to residents in excess of Rs 50,000 per month within the timelines, and in the form prescribed under the new rules to avoid any adverse consequences by way of additional fees, interest, penalty or prosecution.

( This article was first published on the EY Tax Alert Bulletin. This is an opinion piece and the views expressed above are the author’s own. The Quint neither endorses nor is responsible for the same. This article has been published in an arrangement with BloombergQuint.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

Read Latest News and Breaking News at The Quint, browse for more from news and business

Topics:  Direct Taxes   Tax collection 

Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Member
3 months
12 months
12 months
Check Member Benefits
Read More