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Have foreign assets? Get ready to detail these

Last updated on: May 11, 2012 15:04 IST

Have foreign assets? Get ready to detail these

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The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has issued new income tax return forms for those holding assets outside India, (Forms ITR-2, 3 and 4). The detailing requirements have been made more stringent.

Explains Sudhir Kaushik, co-founder and chief financial officer, Taxspanner.com, a Delhi-based income tax (I-T) department-authorised e-return intermediary (ERI), "The new return form has an annexure attached, which lists the kind of assets and the details pertaining to each that an individual filing returns will have to furnish. And, it is mandatory."

To begin with, the wordings used in the Finance Bill or in the tax return to define 'any asset' is wide enough to cover all assets held by an individual outside India, notes another ERI, Taxguru.in. "The schedule specifically requires the details of bank accounts, financial interest in any entity and immovable property. It also requires the assessee to furnish the details of any other asset and accounts where the individual has a signing authority," the ERI says.

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Photographs: Reuters

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Following are the details you have to furnish if you hold assets abroad:

Bank accounts

You will need to give the location of the country where you hold the account, name and address of the bank. Also, you will have to give the account holder's name if you are a signatory to the account. And, the peak balance maintained in the account during the assessment year for which you are filing returns.

Financial interest

If you have an interest in any entity abroad, the country name and code, name, address and nature of the entity where the interest is held, and the total investments made by you in the assessment year, need to be given.

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Photographs: Reuters/File
Tags: , Bank

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Immovable property/asset

For home/land held abroad, you need to provide the name of the country where you hold it and its code, location of property/asset and total investment made in it till now. Co-ownership details also need to be given, such as the joint owner's name, Permanent Account Number (PAN) and share held in the property.

These rules apply even to signing authorities. Some say these are too many and bothersome details.

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Photographs: Reuters
Tags: , PAN

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"Specially for those on long deputation abroad, like employees of information technology companies, as most of the money they earn is taxed by the employer. And, there are some who have very low balance in their foreign accounts," says Kaushik.

Nagaraju P S, director of etaxmentor.com, a Hyderabad-based ERI, says, "These details may not be asked for long. Since this is the first year and there is the black money issue, these many details are required. Otherwise, it will not plug the loopholes like in case of e-filing. In e-filing, you are not required to furnish all details; many things are optional."


Photographs: Catherine Benson/Reuters

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