Overview of TDS

TDS is one of the modes of collection of taxes, by which a certain percentage of amounts are deducted by a person at the time of making/crediting certain specific nature of payment to the other person and deducted amount is remitted to the Government account. It is similar to "pay as you earn" scheme also known as Withholding Tax in many other countries, one of the countries is USA. The concept of TDS envisages the principle of "pay as you earn". It facilitates sharing of responsibility of tax collection between the deductor and the tax administration. It ensures regular inflow of cash resources to the Government. It acts as a powerful instrument to prevent tax evasion as well as expands the tax net.

Who shall deduct tax at source?

Every person responsible for making payment of nature covered by TDS provisions of Income Tax Act shall be responsible to deduct tax.

However in case of payments made under sec. 194A, 194C, 194H, 194I and 194J in respect of individual and HUF, only if the turnover or professional receipt exceeds sum of Rs. 40 lakh or Rs. 10 lakh respectively (the limits will be Rs.60 Lakh or Rs. 15 Lakh respectively w.e.f. 01.07.2010) in previous year, he is required to deduct tax at source.

These persons are mainly:

- Principal Officer of a company for TDS purpose including the employer in case of private employment or an employee making payment on behalf of the employer.

- DDO (Drawing & Disbursing Officer), In case of Govt. Office any officer designated as such.

- In the case of "interest on securities" other than payments made by or on behalf of the Central govt. or the State Government, it is the local authority, corporation or company, including the Principal Officer thereof.

Such person is called Deductor while the person from whom the tax is deducted is called Deductee.

Tax must be deducted at the time of payment in cash or cheque or credit to the payee's account whichever is earlier. Credit to payable account or suspense account is also considered to be credit to payee's account and TDS must be made at the time of such credit.