If you haven’t been able to file your taxes this year, this is your last chance.
First, failure to report your taxable income puts you at risk of audit by the Inland Revenue Board. Essentially, that means government auditors will comb your finances for the past five years to make sure you’re not hiding anything.
Second, if you have to pay taxes, you could be charged with tax evasion. Under this, you could be fined between 1,000 and 20,000 RM; In addition, you will have to pay a premium of 300% on what you owe in missed taxes.
Otherwise, the IRB could simply put you in jail for not submitting your tax records.
Read more: Malaysia tax offenses and penalties
All right, you’ve delayed your deposit long enough. Let’s see how you can get started, before the deadline of March 15, 2021!
Electronic filing is your only hope
The deadline for manual submission of income tax forms has been April 30, which means you are too late. At present, you have to declare your taxes through the online system. To do this, you will need to activate your e-filing option.
This means running to the nearest IRB office to open a tax file (if you don’t already have one). You can also take advantage of the IRB branches of your nearest Urban Transformation Center (UTC). These are usually open later than IRB offices so you can get away after work. They are also generally less crowded.
For the most part, your employer’s human resources department should have this sorted out for you already. In this case, you will need to request an e-filing PIN in order to register your account. Once this is done, you are ready to begin your last minute deposit.
Once you have obtained your PIN, go to the LHDN e-filing website and complete your registration. We’ve put together a handy guide on how to file your income tax returns online if you still don’t know what to do.
Income tax calculator
Use our income tax calculator to find out!
Focus on the most important reliefs
Once your registration is complete, you will be taken to the next steps. This is where you need to go through your stack of receipts and decide which ones to use for your tax breaks. Tax breaks are areas that allow you, as a taxpayer, to deduct a certain amount of money from your total annual income. This step is extremely important because this is how you reduce the total amount of taxes paid.
Tax breaks relate to certain areas or activities that the government encourages and also serves to ease your financial burden. For example, your expenses in areas such as lifestyle (Internet subscription, purchase of books, smartphones, computers, etc.), medicine, education, etc. can be recovered.
Click here for the full list of applicable tax breaks for your return this year.
Ask a friend or colleague to help you
At this point, it is too late to hire a consultant or accountant to help you with your taxes. But it is okay. Most of us work on different pay scales. Although you are new to tax, some of your colleagues and friends may be tax filing experts. Considering its complexity, they will be happy to help and give you tips and tricks depending on how they made theirs. In fact, it could also be faster, instead of trying to figure it all out on your own.
You can also call the LHDN helpline at 1-800-88-5436. There are customer service agents ready to answer all of your questions.
Check for errors
Because you’ve waited until the very last minute to file your income tax returns, you’re more likely to make mistakes. Be sure to verify each piece of information and your numbers before clicking that submit button. Better yet, have someone with experience review it before you return it.
Start planning next year
Once you’ve gone through the forms and successfully completed your tax returns, take a break. Pat yourself on the back and maybe get an ice cream. After that, start preparing for the next year. Keep a file for filing to store your receipts and other tax documents.
With these tips, you should be able to navigate the final days of filing your taxes without much hassle. Find out before May 15, because there is no other way – and you don’t want to risk being audited.
If you need step-by-step instructions to walk you through your e-filing, check out our guide here.
This article was first published in April 2019 and has been updated to include the latest changes on this topic.
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