Income tax returns: PAN’s the way to ‘cheque’ refund status

Jul 22 2014, 10:20 IST
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SummaryMany taxpayers must have filed their annual income tax returns and some are counting on the refunds.

Many taxpayers must have filed their annual income tax returns and some are counting on the refunds. The tax department has made the process of checking the status of refund online very simple by using the permanent account number (PAN). One must make sure to give correct bank account number, MICR/IFSC code of the bank branch for direct credit of the refund amount to the bank account of the tax payer.

The standard paper cheques, wherever issued, require the current bank account number and the correct address of the taxpayer as mandatory information. To check the refund status online, one must log into and enter your PAN and assessment year. One can even check through the toll free number of SBI help desk at 18004259760 or even via email to or

One can see the status messages depending on the actual state of processing or if there are any disparities noticed by the department. The assessee can appeal and notify the department in case of any discrepancies. In cases where the assessing officer has not processed your return, there will be no status displayed on the website.

The income tax department has nominated State bank of India (SBI) for all refund transactions. SBI forwards all the refund cheques or online transfers. For the bank, RTGS/ NECS/ ECS transfers are possible only if the 10 digit account number has been correctly provided by the assessee along with the IFSC code of the bank or MIRC as required in online filing/offline information.

The refund status will be available only if the tax return has been filed correctly and on time. The taxpayer must also ensure that the hard copy of the returns has been been received by the I-T department. Filing returns online through facilities of the I-T department is a great advantage as it helps in quick processing of refund and is less time consuming. Online refund is faster and quicker if the return has been filed on time and preferably before July 31 through the online filing system.

If the taxpayer wants the refund in cheque, then he must ensure that the address is correct. In case there is any change in address, then it must be notified immediately or else the cheque will return to the I-T department. After the assessee has received the refund cheque and has encashed it, then the status at the department’s website will reflect the same.

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