Tax Audit Limit For FY 2020-21: Know about Tax Audit u/s 44AB of The Income Tax Act

This article will try to clear all doubts regarding the applicability of The Income Tax Audit Limit For FY 2020-21. But before know the applicability of the Tax Audit, everyone should know the Meaning of the Tax Audit.

What is Tax Audit

As we all know there are various types of audits being conducted under different laws such as cost audit, company audit or stock audit, etc.

Meaning of Tax Audit- In the same way tax audit is governed by income tax law, as the name suggests, a tax audit is an examination or review of accounts of any business or profession carried out by taxpayers from an income tax point of view.

Section 44AB of Income Tax Act

Section 44AB- This section deals with the tax audit limit and provision of the Tax Audit. W.e.f., 01st April 2019 (also applicable for FY 2020-21), the government has inserted a new limit of turnover of Rs. 5 crores and exempts them from tax audit subject to some specified condition.

Although section 44AB limit is still Rs. 1 crore and 44AD limit is 2 Crore (except specified above). So it creates a lot of confusion among stakeholders regarding the Tax Audit Limit for FY 2020-21.

Must Read:- Depreciation Rate as Per Companies Act for FY 2020-21

Let’s understand the provision of section 44AB:-

EXTRACT OF Section44AB – Audit of accounts of certain persons carrying on business or profession.

Every person,—

(a) carrying on business shall, if his total sales, turnover or gross receipts, as the case may be, in business exceed or exceeds one crore rupees in any previous year;

From AY 2020-21, Govt. inserted a proviso in the said clause so as to provide that in the case of a person whose aggregate of all amount received including the amount received for sales, turnover or gross receipts during the previous years, in cash, does not exceed five percent of the said amount; and the aggregate of all payments made including amount incurred for expenditure, in cash, during the previous year does not exceed five percent Of the said payment, this clause shall have effect as if for the words “one crore rupees”, the words “five crore rupees” had been substituted.   …Applicable from AY 2020-21.

(b) Carrying on profession shall if his gross receipts in profession exceed fifty lakh rupees in any previous year; or

(c) carrying on the business shall if the profits and gains from the business are deemed to be the profits and gains of such person under section 44AE or section 44BB or section 44BBB, as the case may be, and he has claimed his income to be lower than the profits or gains so deemed to be the profits and gains of his business, as the case may be, in any previous year; or

(d) carrying on the profession shall if the profits and gains from the profession are deemed to be the profits and gains of such person under section 44ADA and he has claimed such income to be lower than the profits and gains so deemed to be the profits and gains of his profession and his income exceeds the maximum amount which is not chargeable to income-tax in any previous year; or

Also Read- GSTR 9C Turnover Limit For FY 2020-21

(e) carrying on the business shall, if the provisions of sub-section (4) of section 44AD are applicable in his case and his income exceeds the maximum amount which is not chargeable to income-tax in any previous year, get his accounts of such previous year audited by an accountant before the specified date and furnish by that date the report of such audit in the prescribed form duly signed and verified by such accountant and setting forth such particulars as may be prescribed :

Provided that this section shall not apply to the person, who declares profits and gains for the previous year in accordance with the provisions of sub-section (1) of section 44AD and his total sales, turnover, or gross receipts, as the case may be, in business does not exceed two crore rupees in such previous year:

Tax Audit Limit for FY 2020-21

The chart below will throw some extra lights on the provision mention above and show clearly about Tax Audit Limit for FY 2020-21.

Tax Audit Limit for Individual/HUF/firm engaged in Business

Turnover of Previous yearNet profit (%)Condition of cash payment and cash receipts *Tax Audit Applicability
More than 5 CroreNANAYes, 44 AB(a)
 2-5 croreNAIf less than 5%No
 2-5 croreNAIf more than 5%Yes, 44 AB(a)
1-2 CroreMore than 8% or 6% of turnoverNANo
1-2 CroreLess than 8% or 6% of turnoverNAYes, 44 AB(a)
Up to 1 CroreMore than 8% or 6% of turnoverNANo
Up to 1 CroreLess than 8% or 6% of turnoverNAYes, 44AD (e)
Tax Audit Limit for FY 2020-21

Also Read:- FY 2020-21: Section 44AD of Income Tax Act- Presumptive Scheme

Tax Audit Limit for Individual/HUF/firm engaged in Profession

Turnover of Previous yearNet profit (%)Tax Audit Applicability
More than 50 lakhNAYes, 44 AB(b)
Less than 50 LakhMore than 50 % of turnoverNo
Less than 50 LakhLess than 50 % of turnoverYes, 44 AB(d)
Tax Audit Limit for FY 2020-21

Notes- Important Points

Due date of Tax Audit:- The Tax Audit original due date is 30th September of the assessment year.

The penalty u/s 44AB- If the assessee fails to conduct the audit, he is liable for a penalty of the lower of the following:-

👉 0.5% of Turnover or gross receipts.

👉 Rs. 1,50,000/-

Section 44AD applicability- This section is only applicable to Individual/HUF/ firm.

Also Read- FY 2020-21: Depreciation Rate Chart As Per Income Tax Act, 1961

Changes:- Due to proposed changes it can be summarized as below:

* Tax Audit Limit for FY 2020-21 is Rs. 5 crores for the person who is carrying on business and fulfills the below conditions-

(i)  The aggregate of all amounts received including the amount received for sales, turnover or gross receipts during the previous year, in cash, does not exceed five percent of the total turnover/gross receipts; and

(ii)  The aggregate of all payments made including the amount incurred for expenditure, in cash, during the previous year does not exceed five percent of the total payment.

Frequently Asked Questions- FAQs

  1. What is the tax audit limit for FY 2020-21?

    Every person carrying on business and maintaining books of account is required to get them audited from a chartered accountant if total sales, turnover or gross receipts from the business during the previous year exceeds Rs. 1 Crore.

    Amendment w.e.f., 01st April 2019– To reduce the compliance burden on small and medium enterprises, section 44AB is proposed to amended to increase the threshold limit, for a person carrying on business, from Rs. 1 crore to Rs. 5 crores.

    However, the increased threshold limit of Rs. 5 crores shall be applicable only when cash receipt and payment made during the year do not exceed 5% of total receipt or payment, as the case may be. In other words, more than 95% of the business transaction should be done through banking channels.

  2. What is the due date for tax audit AY 2020-21?

    In order to provide more time to taxpayers for furnishing of Income Tax Returns, it was decided to further extend the due date for furnishing of Income-Tax Returns and consequently, the date for furnishing of various audit reports under the Act including tax audit report and report in respect of international/specified domestic transaction was extended to 15th January 2021.

  3. What is the limit for tax audit for AY 2021-22?

    Section 44AB deals with the tax audit limit and provision of the Tax Audit. W.e.f., 01st April 2019 (also applicable for FY 2020-21), the government has inserted a new limit of turnover of Rs. 5 crores and exempts them from tax audit subject to some specified condition.

    Although section 44AB limit is still Rs. 1 crore and 44AD limit is 2 Crore (except specified above). So it creates a lot of confusion among stakeholders regarding the Tax Audit Limit for AY 2021-22

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Disclaimer: The information contained in the above article are solely for informational purpose after exercising due care. However, it does not constitute professional advice or a formal recommendation. The author does not own any responsibility for any loss or damage caused to any person, directly or indirectly, for any action taken on the basis of the above article.

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Compiled by- CA Chirag Agarwal (Practicing Chartered Accountants)

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