What are PAN numbers?
It seems that everybody has a PAN card with a PAN number these days and if you don’t have one, you’re probably losing out. A Pan number, or rather, a permanent account number is nothing but a sort of TAX ID granted to the citizens of India by the Indian Government. It is issued by the Income Tax Department of India.
Why Do I need a PAN card?
So why should one get a PAN number? The Government of India has recently declared that people – including all Non Resident Indians or NRIs- who wish to conduct any kind of financial transaction which is greater or equal to the tune of fifty thousand Indian Rupees should have a PAN card.
In fact, not only that, if you would like to invest in the Indian market, in stocks, shares and mutual funds, you need to have a PAN number. Even if you would like to carry out property transactions you should have this number. In fact any kind of investment qualifies. This number was basically developed so that the Government can keep track of how much tax is generated within the country, how many people are paying their taxes on time and to track any kind of nefarious activities. But we still come back to the question, what really, is a PAN number?
An illustration will make this concept clear. If you are an NRI you have probably heard of Social Security numbers issued by the government of America to its citizens. Well, a PAN number is quite similar to the Social Security Number which is issued by the IRS in United States. A PAN number consists of ten digits and is composed of both alphabets and numerical and is embossed in the PAN card issued to you. The PAN card issued to the citizens of India is pretty much like a driver’s license in appearance – it has your name, dad’s name, signature, photograph, date of issue and of course, the all important PAN number.
NRI PAN Application Procedure
So if you haven’t got a PAN number already, it would be a smart move to apply for the same. But hang on, if you are envisioning long queues in the merciless heat, think again. These days it has become extremely simple to apply for PAN card. You just have to use the internet for this.
Try visiting the official website for this purpose, or you can always take help from an NRI broker firm. The latter is advisable, since the procedure for opening this kind of account is a tad bit complicated. If you have a broker agent to smoothen things out, it will help immensely.
You are required to furnish several documents and also have them attested in India. This might be a problem if you are based overseas and this is why an NRI broker firm comes in handy. All you have to do, apart from this, is fill up your Pan form, which you can download off the internet and follow the instructions your broker provides you with. Then send the required form all filled out with additional supporting documents to the firm you are dealing with.
Next, the document gets attested and then submitted to government offices for processing. You can also get a unique tracking number to check out the status of your application. Thereafter, you receive your PAN card number within a period of fifteen days, no matter where you are based.
So, if you are considering buying or selling property or conducting any kind of transaction above the sum of fifty thousand Indian Rupees, you should definitely get a Pan number.