We all live in a nation that is strategically poised to become a superpower in the near future or at least that is what most of the politicians, administrators, and statesmen entrusted with governing this country clai. However, to use the terminologies ‘patriotic politicians’ and ‘nationalistic statesmen’ would be paradoxical and incongruent in light of the fact that these group of people are busy pilfering and stripping the country’s resources with impunity. This nation has been witness to many scams perpetrated by politicians of all hues where they have either usurped public money or avoided paying taxes on their earnings. In this context, it would be pertinent to ask ‘Can my spouse pay tax on my salary?’

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Raising this question of course does not relieve us of our liability to pay taxes on our salaries as dutiful citizens. However, it’ll be a big relief for all of us if our spouses contribute partly towards payment of our income tax liabilities. But unfortunately, there is no provision or clause in the Indian Income Tax Act, 1961, that permits your spouse to pay your personal income tax on your behalf. In other words, the income tax that is charged on your earnings or salary has to be cleared from your personal account and your account only.

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The Background
The CBDT (Central Board of Direct Taxes) via its auxiliary organ, the IT (income tax) department has provided for every adult Indian citizen to have his or her own PAN (permanent account number). A typical PAN number is actually an alphanumeric combination that is unique and distinct for every citizen. The IT Tax Act, 1961 requires you to quote your PAN number for all your financial transactions including but not limited to purchasing an asset or property, investing in a fixed deposit scheme or mutual funds, and opening an account in a bank. It also follows that you need to provide your PAN number when you open a salary account for receiving your salary and/or pay taxes incident on your salary.

The actual connotation or significance of ‘Can your spouse pay taxes on your salary’
Since we are of the understanding that nobody else can pay taxes (including your spouse) on your behalf, one does not help getting a little bemused when one is confronted with the question ‘Can your spouse pay taxes on your salary?’

Yes, your spouse would be able to pay your income tax liabilities (or part of it) although not directly. He or she can transfer the stipulated amount to be paid to your personal account either by cheque or electronic transfer. He or she of course, can pay you the sum in cash as well. Taking the money from your spouse for clearing off your tax debts is akin to taking a loan from an individual with the promise that you’ll repay the same sooner or later. It is like entering into a fiduciary transaction with a person who could be your spouse, father, mother, brother or just about anybody with whom you have a reciprocal relationship.

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So, wrapping it up it can be inferred that your spouse can help you monetarily for settling your tax liabilities even if the income tax statutes do not allow for him or her paying the same directly from his or her personal account!  Your spouse can always gift or loan you the amount.

*Salaries are subject to change with time and may vary with company policies, general economic scenario and other factors mentioned above