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Standard Deduction for Salaried Individuals

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Latest Updates on Budget 2019: Standard tax deduction for salaried persons raised from Rs. 40,000 to Rs. 50,000. Read here the key highlights of Interim Budget 2019.

Middle class tax payers & Budget 2019

Standard Deduction – Union Budget 2018

The Finance Minister Jaitley introduced Standard Deduction of Rs. 40,000 in Budget 2018, giving the salaried class something to rejoice about. It replaced the transport allowance Rs. 19200 and medical reimbursement of Rs. 15,000 per annum.

Interestingly, the provision of Standard Deduction was earlier available. However, it was abolished in the Finance Act 2005. They are usually deducted from the gross salary and claimed as an exemption. The government has proposed requisite amendments to Section 17(2)(viii) of the Income-tax Act, 1961. As a result, the effective additional benefit on account of the standard deduction would be an additional income exemption of Rs 5800.

Standard Deduction – Interim Budget 2019

The Interim Budget presented on 1 February 2019 included numerous tax benefits for the salaried and the middle class. Among them, an additional amount of Rs. 10,000 to the Standard Deduction is a noteworthy move. With the Standard Deduction being Rs 50,000 now, it will help taxpayers immensely to reduce their tax outgo.

Let us understand this with a small example:
Particulars Until AY 2018-19 From AY 2019-20 From AY 2020-21
Gross Salary (in Rs.) 8,00,000 8,00,000 8,00,000
(-) Transport Allowance 19,200 Not Applicable Not Applicable
(-) Medical Allowance 15,000 Not Applicable Not Applicable
(-) Standard Deduction Not Applicable 40,000 50,000
Net Salary 7,65,800 7,60,000 7,50,000
From the above, it is evident that the taxable salary has come down on account of the standard deduction.

Taxpayers Receiving Pension

In a recent clarification issued by the income tax department, if a taxpayer has received a pension from the former employer, it is taxable under the head ‘Salaries’. Therefore, the taxpayer can claim a standard deduction of Rs. 40,000* or the amount of pension, whichever is less.

*Increased to Rs 50,000 for FY 2019-2020(AY 2020-21) through the Interim Budget 2019.

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