Thursday, March 21, 2024

Guide to E-Filing of First Income Tax Appeal (Form 35) and Faceless Appeals

In an era where digital transformation is pivotal, the Income Tax Department of India has embraced technology to streamline processes, enhance taxpayer convenience, and ensure transparency. The electronic filing (e-filing) of the first appeal through the revised Form 35 is a significant step towards achieving these goals. This guide provides a thorough walkthrough of the e-filing process, the necessary attachments, and introduces the innovative concept of faceless appeals.

Evolving to Revised Form 35

Form 35's revamp is tailored to align with current income tax laws, making the appeal process more structured and systematic. Below are the highlights of its transformation:



Form Format

Transitioned to a digital framework to facilitate a paperless appeal process.


Redesigned with a structured format for ease of understanding and completion.

Mandatory E-Filing

Required for taxpayers who are obligated to file their income tax returns electronically.


Must be duly verified by an individual authorized under section 140 of the Income Tax Act.

Navigating the E-Filing Process for Form 35

Preparation Phase

·         Mandatory for Electronic Filers: Applicable to those mandated to file income tax returns electronically.

·         Authorized Verification: Verification must be done by an individual authorized under section 140 of the Act.

Step-by-Step E-Filing Guide

1.    Log In: Access your account on the Income Tax E-Filing Portal.

2.    Initiate Filing: Navigate to e-File -> Prepare and Submit Online Form (Other than ITR). Input your PAN, select Form 35, and choose the appropriate assessment year.

3.    Digital Signature: Opt for the Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) type and register it on the portal.

4.    Form Completion: Diligently fill in the details in the designated sections.

5.    Document Attachments: Ensure all necessary documents are attached to substantiate your appeal.

Critical Elements of Form 35:

·         Instructions: Guidelines for accurately filling out the form.

·         Form-35 Section: Pre-filled with basic information, requires detailed inputs elsewhere.

·         Verification Section: For the individual associated with the registered DSC.

·         Attachments: Include mandatory and optional documents, with a total size cap of 50MB, in PDF or zip format.

Attachments & Character Limits:

·         Facts of the Case: Up to 10,000 characters 

·         Grounds of Appeal: 4,000 characters per ground.

·         Issues in Appeal/Additions to Income: 2,000 characters 

Mandatory Attachments:

·         Appeal Fee Challan: Proof of payment for the mandatory appeal fee, a crucial component without which the appeal may not be processed.

·         Order Appealed Against

·         Notice of Demand

Recommended (Optional) Attachments:

·         Detailed grounds of appeal and facts of the case.

Submission Insights

·         Thorough Review: Double-check for accuracy in the form and attachments.

·         Electronic Submission: Proceed to submit the form electronically.

·         Confirmation Print: Keep a printed copy for your records and adhere to any physical submission protocols if applicable.

Embracing the Era of Faceless Appeals

The concept of faceless appeals represents a paradigm shift aimed at eliminating direct contact between taxpayers and the tax officials, thereby promoting a fair, transparent, and efficient appeal process.

·         Objective: Minimize biases and corruption by removing physical interactions.

·         Modus Operandi: Appeals are handled electronically, with random allocation to officers to ensure impartiality.

·         Advantages: Accelerated resolution, optimal use of resources, and minimized litigation delays.

Understanding Appeal Fee Structure

The appeal fee structure varies based on the income determined by the Assessing Officer in the assessment order:

Income Determined by AO (Rs.)

Fees (Rs.)

Less than or equal to 1 lakh


More than 1 lakh but less than 2 lakhs


More than 2 lakhs


Any other case


Best Practices for an Efficient E-Filing Experience

·         Avoid Special Characters: To prevent errors during submission.

·         Conciseness and Clarity: Summarize information within the form but attach detailed documents for comprehensive support.

·         Save Progress: Utilize the feature to save drafts to mitigate data loss risks.

Closing Thoughts

The digitization of the first income tax appeal process via Form 35, coupled with the introduction of faceless appeals, marks a significant advancement towards a modern, efficient, and transparent tax administration in India. By following this guide, taxpayers can navigate the appeal process smoothly, ensuring their submissions are thorough, compliant, and well-supported.




Appeal Form has the following particulars for working for final appeal filing online

Section of Form No. 35



Personal Information

First Name, Middle Name, Last Name/Entity

Enter the full name or the entity's name.

Ensure accuracy for official records.

PAN or Aadhaar Number

Provide your PAN or Aadhaar number.

Mandatory for identification.

TAN (if available)

Enter TAN, if applicable.

For entities involved in tax deduction at source.

Address Details

Input full address details.

Includes Flat/Door/Block No., Premises/Building/Village name, Road/Street/Post Office, Area/Locality, Town/City/District, State, Country, Pin Code.

Contact Details

Phone/Mobile No., Email Address

Essential for communication. Specify if notices can be emailed.

Order against which Appeal is Filed

Assessment Year/Financial Year

Specify the relevant year.

Critical for identifying the appeal's context.

Details of the Order Appealed Against

Section of the IT Act, Date of Order, etc. Picks DIN No. from window online

Facilitates identification of the contested order.

Authority Passing the Order

Name the income-tax authority.

Pending Appeal

Existing Appeals

Specify if any appeals are pending.

Provide details like Appeal No., filing date, authority, etc., if applicable.

Appeal Details

Section under which Appeal is Filed

Mention the specific IT Act section and clause.

Ensures the legal basis for the appeal is clear.

Financial Information

Details on assessed income, additions, penalties.

Include amounts related to the assessment, disputed additions/disallowances, penalties, and taxes paid. Mention BSR Code, Date of Payment, Sl. No, and Amount for payments.

Statement of Facts and Grounds of Appeal

Statement of Facts

Summarize the case facts.

Not exceeding 10000 words. Detail the context and specifics of the case.

Issues in Appeal for Addition of Income

Detail the issues contested.

Not exceeding 2000 words for all issues combined. Present a clear argument on each contested issue.

Grounds of Appeal

List and elaborate on each ground of appeal.

4000 words allowed for each ground. Ensure comprehensive and detailed justification for each ground.

Additional Evidence

Indicate any new evidence submitted.

Specify if additional evidence not presented before the income-tax authority is being filed. Follow Rule 46A.

Appeal Filing Details

Appeal Fees Paid

Detail about appeal fees paid.

Include BSR Code, Date of Payment, Sl. No, and Amount.

Verification and Declaration

Appellant's declaration.

Confirm the truthfulness of the provided information and the absence of additional evidence not listed in the form.