The salary structure of an individual consists of several components which can help him reduce his tax burden. While some of these components are fully or partially taxable, some may be fully exempt from tax. Here are 5 components that can be used by an employee to minimise his tax burden and plan his salary structure accordingly.
1.) Employee's Provident Fund:
Employee and employer contribute 12 per cent each of basic salary to EPF account. From the employer's 12 per cent contribution, 8.33 per cent goes towards employee pension scheme. Under section 80C of the Income Tax Act, the contribution deducted from the employee's account is exempted from tax up to Rs 1.5 lakh. It may also be noted that under certain conditions, the interest earned on EPF is also tax-exempt.
2.) Children education allowance:
An education allowance of Rs 100 per month or Rs 1,200 per annum child paid to an employee by an employer is allowed as deduction from taxable income to the employee. This deduction is granted up to a maximum of 2 children for the employee. Along with this, you can also claim deductions for tuition fees paid for your children under section 80C of the income tax Act.
3.) House Rent Allowance (HRA):
It is not fully taxable. A part of HRA is exempted under Section 10 (13A) of the Income-tax Act, 1961, subject to certain conditions. The amount of HRA exemption is deductible from the total income before computing taxable income. This salary component helps an employee to save tax. the tax benefit is available only for the period in which the rented space is occupied.4.) National Pension System (NPS):
There are two types of the NPS account. NPS Tier-I account is the primary account with a lock-in period while NPS Tier-II account is an optional account no lock-in periods. The subscribers can avail a deduction of Rs 2 lakh in total under Section 80 CCD (1) section 80 CCD (1B) of the Income Tax Act. It helps to build a retirement corpus.
5.) Gift voucher:
The value of a gift, or voucher, or token provided by an employer, the aggregate value of which does not exceed Rs 5,000 annually, is tax-free in the hands of an employee.