The Jurisdiction of the Assessing Officer i.e. his Income Tax Ward/ Income Tax Circle/ Income Tax Range No/AO Code is required to be stated while filing the Income Tax Return. Furnishing these details in the Income Tax Return is optional and not mandatory. These details are also required to be furnished while filing an application for a new PAN Card
What is Income Tax Ward/Circle/Range/AO Code?
There are more than 3 Crore taxpayers in India. And to assess the returns of these taxpayers, there are many Income Tax Officers designated by the Income Tax Department. These Income Tax Officers sit in different offices across India and each officer is designated a specified area and a specified category of taxpayers only. This specified category of taxpayers would fall in the jurisdiction of that specified officer only.
So the Income Tax Ward/ Circle/ Range No./AO Code is the number that has been assigned to the Income Tax Assessing Officer who would be monitoring your Income Tax Return. In case of any discrepancy, they also have the powers to scrutinise your tax returns and demand for extra payment of taxes.
- Recommended Read: Income Tax Slabs
Procedure to Locate the Income Tax Ward/ Circle/Range/ AO Code
With effect from 1st Feb 2017, the procedure to locate the Income Tax Ward/ Circle/ Range/ AO Code has been changed. Earlier, you could check the AO Code by only mentioning the PAN No. However, with effect from 1st Feb 2017, a new method of checking the AO Code has been introduced.
From 1st Feb 2017, to check the AO Code, the taxpayer would be required to follow the below mentioned steps:-
1. Login to their Income Tax Account on www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in
2. Click on Profile Settings and then click My Profile as shown below
3. Click on PAN Card as shown below and it will display all the PAN Card details and the details of the Income Tax Officer and his Area Code, AO Type, Range Code, AO No., Jurisdiction etc. as shown below