Corporate income tax is a pivotal direct tax imposed on the profits of companies operating within India. Serving as one of the prime sources of revenue for the Indian government, the Income Tax Department oversees and ensures the execution of corporate income tax laws in the country.
For corporations, being well-versed in the rules and nuances of this tax is crucial to ensure adherence and sidestep potential penalties. This blog delves into the vital facets of corporate income tax in India, touching upon the varied corporate entities, prevailing tax rates, permissible exemptions, and the requisite compliance mechanisms.
Also Read:- Introduction to Indian Business Taxation
In essence, the corporate income tax is determined based on a company’s cumulative income, encompassing earnings from business operations, investments, and other diverse activities. The tax rates are contingent on the company’s nature and its operational scale.
Different corporate entities exist in India, each carrying distinct tax implications:
To provide clarity on the corporate income tax rates in India, the following table has been curated:
|Type of company||Turnover/gross receipts in the previous year||Basic corporate income tax rate||Surcharge||Health and education cess||Total tax rate|
|Domestic company||Up to ₹400 crores||22%||10% (if taxable income > ₹10 crores)||4%||26.48% (if taxable income > ₹10 crores) or 22.96% (if taxable income <= ₹10 crores)|
|Domestic company||More than ₹400 crores||25%||10% (if taxable income > ₹10 crores)||4%||29.40% (if taxable income > ₹10 crores) or 25.92% (if taxable income <= ₹10 crores)|
|Foreign company with permanent establishment in India||Any||30%||10% (if taxable income > ₹10 crores)||4%||34.40% (if taxable income > ₹10 crores) or 30.92% (if taxable income <= ₹10 crores)|
|Foreign company without permanent establishment in India||Any||40%||0||0||40%|
Beyond the standard corporate income tax, companies are also subjected to the MAT, imposed on a company’s book profits even in the absence of taxable income. The standing rate for MAT is 15%.
The government extends various tax benefits and exemptions, with a particular emphasis on startups and MSMEs. Prominent incentives comprise:
To navigate the intricacies of the burgeoning digital economy, recent tax measures, like the equalization levy, have been established. This levy is imposed on specific digital services rendered by non-resident entities, currently standing at 2%.
Dividends undergo taxation at the recipient shareholders’ end. They can choose between the old or new tax regimes. In the former, dividends are taxed as per the shareholder’s personal tax rate, while in the latter, a flat 15% is applied.
Obligations require companies to remit advance tax based on anticipated earnings, distributed across four installments within the fiscal year. Post this, a self-assessment tax return is mandatory, along with settling any outstanding tax.
Companies crossing a specified turnover or income threshold must have their accounts audited. Timely tax return filing and tax payments are crucial. Non-compliance could invite penalties.
For corporations operating in India, a comprehensive understanding of corporate income tax rules and its intricacies is indispensable. This not only ensures compliance but also leverages available tax incentives, maximizing their operational efficiency.
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