Owning a PAN card is a responsibility given to every taxpayer, and the Government does not allow anyone to possess more than one PAN. If someone obtains two PAN cards, whether accidentally or intentionally, they can be penalised or even criminalised in some cases.
What to do if you somehow have multiple PAN cards?
There is no need to panic, as you can surrender your duplicate PAN immediately to avoid penalties. You can do this online or offline using a PAN card surrender letter.
Now let us look into the issue of multiple PAN in more detail.
Not everyone who ends up with more than one PAN does so with malicious intent. There can be genuine cases when individuals accidentally get allotted more than one PAN. However, these persons still have a responsibility to surrender such PAN cards.
Here are some common reasons why people end up having multiple PAN cards:
There are some instances when people who have applied for a PAN card may reapply again. For example, an NRI comes to India, applies for a PAN, and immediately moves out of the country. After a few years, he revisits, forgets about it and reapplies for a new PAN.
Change of address
In this instance, a person has moved to a new address and applied for a new PAN card to avoid the hassles of updating his old PAN. Though his/her intention may not be fraudulent, he still has broken the law.
Persons may update their PAN and receive a new one due to a name change. In this situation, the person can forget about surrendering their old PAN, leading to multiple PAN cards.
Section 139A of the Income Tax Act makes it clear that any taxpayer can hold only one PAN card. The seventh provision of this Section dealing with eligibility for PAN application states that no one with an allotted PAN can possess/ apply for another one. This makes it illegal for any taxpaying entity to hold more than one PAN.
Furthermore, Section 272B of the IT Act stipulates a penalty for not following the provisions of Section 139A. It imposes a fine of Rs. 10,000 on anyone who possesses more than one PAN based on the discretion of the concerned Assessing Officer (AO). This means it is up to the income tax officer to decide the intention behind the possessor of two PAN cards.
Moreover, defaulters (persons with 2 PANs) will be given a chance to explain themselves to their AO regarding this matter. This Section is also applicable when an individual quote a false PAN when asked by an official.
The process of surrendering an additional PAN card is similar to the one followed for correcting PAN details. The process is given below:
Visit the official website of NSDL (National Securities Depositories Limited).
From the ‘Application Type’ drop-down menu, select the PAN correction option.
Fill in the personal details, including your full name, date of birth, mobile number, email and PAN.
After submitting this form, you will be redirected to a new page. You will receive a new token number here and in your email inbox.
Log in using the temporary token number, email and date of birth to complete the pending application form.
Click on the ‘Submit scanned images through e-Sign’ checkbox and enter the PAN you want to retain.
Fill out the rest of the personal details. Enter details in mandatory fields (marked with *) and make sure to not click the corresponding checkbox on the left margin.
On the next page, mention which additional PAN you want to surrender.
Now, you have to select which document you want to submit as proof of identity, address, date of birth and upload them.
Preview the application form on the next page, click on ‘Verify’ and proceed to make the payment. You will get an acknowledgement for future reference.
You can also surrender an additional PAN by writing a PAN card surrender letter to NSDL TIN facilitation centres, UTI PAN Centres or jurisdictional AO. Follow the given steps to surrender your PAN card via the offline method:
Fill up Form 49A for changing or correcting your PAN. Make sure to include the details of the additional PAN you wish to surrender and the one you intend to keep.
Send a copy of the PAN along with this form to the nearest NSDL TIN facilitation centre or UTI PAN centre. Make sure to keep the Acknowledgement copy for future reference.
Write a PAN card surrender letter addressed to the AO of your jurisdiction. Mention your personal details, such as full name and date of birth (or date of incorporation for firms, companies, etc.), along with details of the duplicate PAN card.
Submit this letter along with a copy of the duplicate PAN card and acknowledgement slip.
You may want to surrender any PAN card duplicates to avoid various penalties and other consequences. As penalty under Section 272B is not applicable for anyone, you should be able to justify your reasons for having multiple PAN cards and not be charged by the income tax official.
Ans: For applicants with an address in India, a processing fee of Rs. 110 is applicable, while for foreign addresses, the fee is Rs. 1020. You can pay this amount via credit card, debit card, internet banking or demand draft in the name of ‘NSDL-PAN’.
Ans: After paying the fees, you must download the acknowledgement slip and print it. Individual applicants have to affix two photographs and sign across them, while for non-individuals, the authorised signatory must sign them.
You have to send this along with a copy of PAN, proof of ID, address proof and date of birth proof to NSDL’s address in Pune.
Ans: There is a possibility that your AO may not cancel your additional PAN immediately. He/she may investigate the details of your surrendered PAN and check incomes disclosed and taxes filed against it. The AO may also call for you to answer questions to probe your request.
Ans: Anyone with a PAN and eligible for Aadhaar needs to link PAN with Aadhaar within March 31 2022. All PAN cards not linked with Aadhaar will be inoperative after that date. You cannot furnish an inoperative PAN for high-value transactions and would therefore be penalised u/s 272B.
Ans: You can apply for a reprint of your PAN card in the case of a loss or theft. However, you will have to file an FIR and send its copy along with that of the old PAN card in your application. You can also apply for a reprint of your PAN card if it is damaged or needs to be updated.
Disclaimer: Mutual Fund investments are subject to market risks, read all scheme-related documents carefully.
This article has been prepared on the basis of internal data, publicly available information and other sources believed to be reliable. The information contained in this article is for general purposes only and not a complete disclosure of every material fact. It should not be construed as investment advice to any party. The article does not warrant the completeness or accuracy of the information, and disclaims all liabilities, losses and damages arising out of the use of this information. Readers shall be fully liable/responsible for any decision taken on the basis of this article.
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