3:53 pm - Monday March 24, 5879

Taxation

Wealth Tax

Wealth tax is a direct tax, which is charged on the net wealth of the assessee. It is a tax on the benefits derived from ownership of property. The tax is to be paid year after year on the same property on its market value, whether or not such property yields any income. Wealth tax, in India, is levied under Wealth-tax Act, 1957. The Income tax department under the Department of Revenue in the Ministry of Finance administers the Wealth Tax Act, 1957 as well as the Wealth Tax Rules framed there under.

Under the Act, the tax is charged in respect of the wealth held during the assessment year by the following persons :

  • Individual

  • Hindu Undivided Family(HUF)

  • Company

Chargeability to tax also depends upon the residential status of the assessee same as the residential status for the purpose of the Income Tax Act.

Wealth tax is not levied on productive assets, hence investments in shares, debentures, UTI, mutual funds, etc are exempt from it. The assets chargeable to wealth tax are :

  • Guest house, residential house, commercial building

  • Motor car

  • Jewellery, bullion, utensils of gold, silver etc

  • Yachts, boats and aircrafts

  • Urban land

  • Cash in hand(in excess of 50,000), only for Individual & HUF

The following will not be included in Assets :
  • Any of the above if held as Stock in trade.

  • A house held for business or profession.

  • Any property in nature of commercial complex.

  • A house let out for more than 300 days in a year.

  • Gold deposit bond.

  • A residential house allotted by a Company to an employee, or an Officer, or a Whole Time Director ( Gross salary i.e. excluding perquisites and before Standard Deduction of such Employee, Officer, Director should be less than Rs. 5,00,000).

The Assets exempt from Wealth tax are :
  • Property held under a trust.

  • Interest of the assessee in the coparcenary property of a HUF of which he is a member.

  • Residential building of a former ruler.

  • Assets belonging to Indian repatriates.

  • One house or a part of house or a plot of land not exceeding 500sq.mts,for individual & HUF assessee.

Wealth tax is chargeable in respect of Net wealth corresponding to Valuation date.(Net wealth means all assets less loans taken to acquire those assets. Valuation date means 31st March of immediately preceding the assessment year). In other words, the value of the taxable assets on the valuation date is clubbed together and is reduced by the amount of debt owed by the assessee. The net wealth so arrived at is charged to tax at the specified rates. Wealth tax is charged @ 1% of the amount by which the net wealth exceeds Rs.15 Lakhs.

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Other Categories

Taxation
Taxation of Individuals
Who is liable to pay income tax
Sources of Income
Income from Salaries
Income from Capital Gains
Income from House property
Income from Profits & gains of business or profession
Income from other sources
Taxation of Partnerships
Customs Duties (Import Duty and Export Tax)
Wealth Tax
Taxation of Corporates
Taxation of Agents
Excise Duty
Permanent Account Number (PAN)
Taxation of other forms of business entities
Taxation of Trusts
Taxation of Small Scale Industries
Joint Venture Companies
Cooperative Societies
Taxation of Representative offices
Service Tax
TDS,TCS,TAN
Value Added Tax (VAT)


Introduction

India has a well developed tax structure. The power to levy taxes and duties is distributed among the three
tiers of Government, in accordance with the provisions of the Indian Constitution. The main taxes/duties that
the Union Government is empowered to levy are:- Income Tax (except tax on agricultural income,
which the State Governments can levy), Customs duties, Central Excise and Sales Tax and Service Tax. The principal taxes levied by the State Governments are:- Sales Tax (tax on intra-State sale of goods), Stamp Duty (duty on transfer of property), State Excise (duty on manufacture of alcohol), Land Revenue (levy on land used for agricultural/non-agricultural purposes), Duty on Entertainment and Tax on Professions & Callings. The Local Bodies are empowered to levy tax on properties (buildings, etc.), Octroi (tax on entry of goods for use/consumption within areas of the Local Bodies), Tax on Markets and Tax/User Charges for utilities like water supply, drainage, etc.

In the wake of economic reforms, the tax system in India has under gone a radical change, in line with the
liberal policy. Some of the changes include:- rationalization of tax structure; progressive reduction in peak
rates of customs duty; reduction in corporate tax rate; customs duties to be aligned with ASEAN levels;
introduction of value added tax; widening of the tax base; tax laws have been simplified to ensure better compliance. Tax policy in India provides tax holidays in the form of concessions for various types of investments. These include incentives to priority sectors and to industries located in special area/ regions. Tax incentives are available also for those engaged in development of infrastructure.