Eye examination is personal expense and not deductible

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Ruling in Dhimant Hiralal Thakar v Commissioner of Income Tax BC II, Bombay High Court held that expenditure for a pre-operation investigation of a lawyer’s eyes in the US was not wholly and exclusively incurred for the purposes of a profession and a deduction could not be claimed as per section 37 of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

Thakar had sought a deduction of ₹43,600 under section 37 for the expenditure. The claim was disallowed by the assessing officer on the ground it was a personal expenditure and did not arise in the course of his professional work. An appeal before the Commissioner of Income Tax (Appeals) and the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) had been unsuccessful. The commissioner said that going by Thakar’s logic even expenditure incurred on food to preserve a person could be treated as an allowable deduction under section 37(1).

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The dispute digest is compiled by Bhasin & Co, Advocates, a corporate law firm based in New Delhi. The authors can be contacted at [email protected] or [email protected] Readers should not act on the basis of this information without seeking professional legal advice.