Do NRI need to disclose foreign bank account information in tax returns ?

Updated on: Jan 25th, 2024

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4 min read

There has been lot of confusion among various NRI’s and expatriates regarding the disclosure of their overseas accounts in the tax return in India. The Income Tax department in a press release on 24th July,2017 clarified this issue.

It is not mandatory for NRI to disclose the detail of their overseas bank accounts while filing return in India.In case of refund,they should mention the bank account held by them in India.It is only in case when they do not have bank account in India and they have to claim refund,they can mention the detail of their foreign bank account to get the credit of such refund.

Therefore, the NRIs who are not claiming refund or who are claiming refund but having a bank account in India are not required to furnish details of their foreign bank account in the return of income.

The refund generated on processing of return of income is currently credited directly to the bank accounts of taxpayers.Providing the  details of bank accounts in which the refund is to be credited is mandatory for direct credit of refund in accounts. So the NRI’s who do not have bank account in India and want to claim refund were facing difficulty in getting refund.This is because ; earlier there was  no column in the return form for reporting details of foreign bank account held by NRI’s to claim refund.

Thus the Income Tax department ,on the basis of representations received from the NRI’s ,provided the facility for reporting the foreign bank accounts in the return forms in order to claim refunds.

No, NRIs generally don't need to disclose foreign bank account information in their Indian tax returns unless:

  • They claim a tax refund in their foreign bank account: In this case, providing your foreign bank account details is necessary to receive the refund.
  • They have income from sources in India that's taxable under Indian law: This includes income like rent from property in India held by an NRI. If such income is deposited in a foreign bank account, it must be disclosed in the ITR along with the account details.

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Quick Summary

NRIs don't need to disclose foreign bank accounts in Indian tax returns unless claiming a tax refund or have taxable income from India. Refund credited to Indian bank accounts. Recent changes allow reporting foreign bank accounts to claim refunds.

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