How To File Income Tax Return Without Form 16?

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  • 06 Feb 2023

Form 16 contains details of the amount of tax deducted at source (TDS) on salary by your employer. It also includes the breakup of your salary into following components:

  • Salary income
  • Income chargeable as salary, such as House Rent allowance (HRA), Leave Travel Allowance (LTA), Dearness Allowance (DA) etc.
  • Deductions under Sections 80C, 80CCC, 80CCD – such as EPF, ELSS, PPF, ULIP etc. Details of some of these heads have to be provided by you to the employer.
  • Deductions under Section 80D (medical insurance), Section 80E (interest on education loans) and Section 80G (donations). This will be required if you have provided proof to your employer regarding these deductions.
  • Details of tax payable as well as Tax Deducted at Source (TDS).

Under Section 203 of the Income Tax Act, 1961, Form 16 is a certificate issued annually by the employer to his salaried employee. It is a certificate of proof of the TDS deducted and deposited on your behalf by your employer.

Having the Form 16 simplifies the ITR filing and allows you to claim relief on TDS.


June 15, 2018 (for the F.Y. 2017-18) is the last day for the employer to issue Form 16 to his employees. As per Rule 31 – sub rule 3 of The Income Tax Rules, 1962 - the Due Date of furnishing Form 16 to the employee is “By the 15th day of June of the financial year immediately following the financial year in which the income was paid and tax deducted”.

July 31, 2018 (for the F.Y. 2017-18) is the last date of ITR filing for all taxpayers including individuals, Hindu Undivided Family (HUF), Body of Individuals (BOI) and Association of Persons (AOP) . The executions in this case are:

  • A company
  • A person (other than a company) whose accounts are required to be audited under this Act or under any other law, and
  • A working partner of a firm whose accounts are required to be audited under this act or under any law for the time being in force

This gives you a window of 45 days between the date of receiving your salary Form 16 and the date of filing your return. Ideally, you should wait for the Form 16 from your employer before filing your tax return, as it is a simpler and more effective way of doing so.

At times, you may not receive Form 16 on time. This could be for a number of reasons like the employer’s business being shut down or you leaving the employer without completing necessary exit formalities or employer delaying in giving the form to you.

Sometimes, an employer may not issue Form 16 as the salary from the income he pays is below the taxable income. In such a case, you will have to file income tax return without Form 16.

You can do so by following these steps:

  • Collect and tally all your payslips – also note the all allowances received (exempt and otherwise).
  • Add your own contribution to the provident fund (not the employer’s contribution)
  • Claim all deductions under Chapter VI-A
  • Add your income from other sources
  • Compute the taxable income as per the slab you fall under
  • Know the taxes deducted at source and deposit that amount in the government account by filling Form 26AS, which is available on the government site and linked to your PAN.
  • Pay further taxes due or claim refund receivable – as the case may be.

The procedure is much simpler if you do receive the Form 16:

  • The gross salary along with all allowances — exempt and otherwise — would be calculated by the employer, and hence, you would receive a more comprehensive list of all amounts paid to you by the employer.
  • The TDS deducted and paid would be clearly written and proved.
  • In case of any discrepancy between TDS amount deducted from salary and TDS deposited with the government, you must check with Form 26AS to avoid paying extra tax.

Considering the ease of filing and the lack of ambiguity, it would be definitely a good idea to file your returns after receiving Form 16 from the employer.

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