Taxing times: How you can use technology to facilitate data compilation

Published: March 15, 2017 10:57:30 AM

15th March is the Ides of March and the deadline for Advance Tax. It was the day Julius Caesar was assassinated. So, don't let it become the day the taxman comes after you.

For businessmen and wealth-owners, and their managers and chartered accountants, advance tax assessment is often as much a burden as the tax itself.

By Chirag Nanavati

15th March is the Ides of March and the deadline for Advance Tax. It was the day Julius Caesar was assassinated. So, don’t let it become the day the taxman comes after you.

For businessmen and wealth-owners, and their managers and chartered accountants, advance tax assessment is often as much a burden as the tax itself. The main reason for this is scattered data about diverse investments, incomes, and expenses, data which have to be gathered and compiled from multiple sources. The result is this list and more, demanding your attention, with the deadline less than a week away:

The government has implemented a great initiative in the form of the Tax Credit Statement or Form 26AS. This allows you to verify that all the claims of TDS against your PAN have been paid to the government, a tremendous boon while filing returns.

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Compiling the rest of the information from emails and hard copy reports you received in the past, chasing after multiple sources for missing data, verifying data from these sources against actual receipts, and finally calculating your taxable income, that is the Herculean task. It might be too late for a quick-fix solution for this year, but it’s the perfect time to ensure that you plan better and aren’t left scrambling in the next.

The solution lies in utilising technology; not numerous complicated excel-sheets but software designed specifically for asset management. A software platform allows you to record all financial data in one place, resulting in a quick and easy access to consolidated financial information needed for taxation and accounting. It also provides accurate investment metrics, performance comparison, cash-flow summary and more. For example, you can instantly generate reports detailing opportunities of lot-wise unrealized short-term loss, and use that to offset tax liability on realized short-term gains from stocks and funds.

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Take a long-term view to managing your wealth and consolidate your financial data on a platform that guarantees:

1. Data security- secure server, password protection, ability to set limited authorisation for multiple users
2. Flexibility to record multiple asset classes- Stocks, Portfolio Management Services, private equity, bonds, deposits, bank accounts, real estate, jewelry, liabilities, et cetera and additional accounting functionality for incomes and expenses
3. Reports and Analytics- Asset allocation, periodic and annualized Internal Rate of Return, advisor performance and other customisable reports you can use to make better wealth management decisions.

(The Author is Executive Director, Asset Vantage)

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