Tax Return Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Tax Return, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Tax Return?

It is a form supplied by the government body (taxation authority) for the citizens to file with them the details of their income, expense, deductions, etc thereby computing the tax liability, within a specified date of the year.

History and Meaning of Tax Return

Taxation has existed since at least Ancient Egypt, but the modern concept of a tax return dates back to the 16th century when Britain began implementing a national income tax. By the 20th century, many countries had adopted income taxes, and tax returns became a standard method of calculating tax liability. A tax return is a document filed with the government that reports income, deductions, credits, and other information used to calculate a person or business's tax liability for a given period.

Examples of Tax Return

  1. John must file his tax return by April 15th to report his income and claim any deductions or credits he is eligible for.
  2. Jane hired a tax professional to prepare her tax return and ensure all the forms were completed accurately.
  3. The government may review tax returns to audit for accuracy and compliance with tax laws.
  4. David filed his tax return late and was subject to penalties and interest on the unpaid tax amount.
  5. Small business owners are required to file separate tax returns for themselves and their business entity.

Legal Terms Similar to Tax Return

  1. Tax liability - the amount of tax an individual or business owes to the government based on their income and other factors.
  2. Tax deduction - an expense or credit that reduces an individual's or business's taxable income, resulting in a lower tax liability.
  3. Auditing - the process of reviewing financial records and tax returns to ensure compliance with laws and regulations.