ITR 2022: What happens if you do not react to a faulty Income Tax Return notification under Section 139? (9)

Consequences of defective income tax return: The mere mention of an Income Tax Notice rings an alarm bell for many people. But there is nothing so scary about it. It is a common practice for the Income Tax Department to send notices to taxpayers for multiple reasons. The reasons for sending the notice could be not filing the Income Tax Return (ITR) or filing a defective return.

A return can be considered defective if the taxpayer makes an error or misses entering some important information while filing ITR. The Income Tax Department sends its notice under Section 139 (9) to ask the taxpayer to rectify the errors in the “Defective” ITR.

Here are three key items to understand about the faulty income tax return notification and what happens if you do not respond:


  • Your ITR for the relevant Assessment Year will be regarded as invalid if you fail to react to the Income Tax notification regarding a faulty return. In this situation, the tax office will assume that you have not submitted your return, and your refund, if any, will not be processed.
  • Within 15 days of receiving the Section 139)() faulty return notification, you must fix the issue. By writing to the Assessing Officer, you can request an extension of the deadline (A.O.)
  • Some of the mistakes that render a return deficient include: Failing to file details of taxes paid; TDS claimed but matching income not provided for tax; Unpaid taxes or mismatch of taxes paid in ITR; Failing to file audit report; Failing to file books of accounts; Failing to file ITR; etc.

The deadline to file an income tax return for the assessment year 2022–2023 was July 31, 2022. Over 6.16 crore ITRs for AY 2022–23 had been submitted up till September 11, 2022, according to statistics on the income tax website at the time of writing. More than 5.47 of these have been confirmed by taxpayers, and the government has processed more than 5.08 crore of these returns.

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