To curb malpractices, false representations and fake certifications, the Professional Development Committee of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) introduced the innovative concept of UDIN (Unique Document Identification Number). With the introduction of UDIN, every Chartered Accountant having a full-time Certificate of Practice has to register on the UDIN Portal and ensure that he/she generates a UDIN for all certificates attested/certified by him/her.
The Income Tax Department is making constant efforts to integrate with other Government agencies and bodies so that there is a seamless flow of data between the departments. This will help the various departments to trace dishonest taxpayers.
On 26 November 2020, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) notified that the Income-Tax e-filing portal had completed its integration with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) portal for validation of the Unique Document Identification Number (UDIN). With this integration, the UDIN added on the e-filling portal will be validated with the ICAI database on the back end and discrepancies (if any) will be flagged. This will instil the fear of prosecution among the taxpayers and others. In case an invalid document is uploaded (incorrect UDIN), the CBDT/ICAI will take the required action.
Points To Remember
- Quoting of UDIN on the Income-Tax e-filing portal was made mandatory from 27 April 2020. In other words, while filing the Income Tax Return, Taxpayers/Chartered Accountants should ensure that the UDIN, corresponding to the audit reports/certificates submitted by the Chartered Accountants on the e-filing portal, is mentioned.
- If a Chartered Accountant is unable to generate a UDIN before the submission of the audit report/certificate, he/she can proceed to submit such documents on the e-filing portal subject to the condition that, the Chartered Accountant will generate and update the UDIN within 15 calendar days (from the date of form submission on the Income- Tax e-filing portal).
- In case the UDIN is not updated within the 15 days provided, the audit report/certificate uploaded will be treated as an invalid submission.
The CBDT believes that this integration ‘will help in weeding out fake or incorrect Tax Audit Reports not duly authenticated with the ICAI.’