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LHDN penalties in malaysia under income tax act 1967

LHDN Penalties That Will Convince You To Pay Your Taxes

Forget social responsibility; let’s talk legal and financial consequences of committing tax offences in Malaysia.

Of course, we’re sure none of our readers would ever dream of breaking tax law.

Then again, we were sure that France would win the last World Cup and look how that turned out. 

So, we figured it can’t hurt to raise awareness about what lies in store for those that incur the wrath of Malaysia’s Inland Revenue Board also known as LHDN. 

Here’s how we’ll break it down:

  1. We’ll list the offences under two types: negligent and intentional
  2. We’ll provide avenues of recourse for those who live in fear of emails from LHDN
  3. Nagging time: we’ll provide some tips on how to avoid negligently committing tax offences

Let’s start.

Possibly negligent tax offences

It goes without saying any offence can be committed intentionally.

However, these could be committed accidentally, which is why we’ll give people the benefit of the doubt.

To be clear: LHDN does not classify their offences and penalties this way – it’s just us making it easier for readers to understand. 

OffenceSection Under Income Tax Act 1967Penalty (RM)
Incorrect tax return by omitting or understating any income113(1)(a)1,000 – 10,000 and double the undercharged tax amount
Incorrect information about the tax liability of a taxpayer113(1)(b)1,000 – 10,000 and double the undercharged tax amount
Not reporting a change of address within 3 months120(1)2,000 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 6 months, or both
Not obeying an order to keep proper documentation119A300 – 10,000, imprisonment up to 1 year, or both

What to do if you’ve been negligent

Everyone makes mistakes, the important thing is to own up to it and make amends, which is precisely why LHDN has a guide on how to make an amendment to your tax returns.

in short, you must write a letter explaining the mistake and include relevant supporting documents such as receipts and invoices then submit it via the LHDN Customer Feedback Portal.

In the case of reporting a change of address, you can update your information online via LHDN’s e-Filing platform.

Definitely intentional tax offences

Okay, if you’ve committed any of the acts listed below, it’s kind of hard to plead ignorance.

It doesn’t mean you’re a bad person, it just means you probably knew you were doing something you shouldn’t, or NOT doing something you should. 

Let’s see what naughty looks like.

OffenceSection Under Income Tax Act 1967Penalty (RM)
Not submitting an Income Tax Return Form112(1)200 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 6 months, or both
Not notifying LHDN of your tax liability status112(1)200 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 6 months, or both
Trying to evade tax or assisting another person to evade tax114(1)1,000 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 3 years, or both, and triple the undercharged tax amount
Trying to leave the country to avoid paying tax115(1)200 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 6 months, or both
Obstructing an LHDN officer from performing their taxly duties1161,000 – 10,000, imprisonment up to 1 year, or both
Not obeying an order to provide specific information by LHDN120(1)200 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 6 months, or both
Assisting others to under declare  income114(1)2,000 – 20,000, imprisonment up to 3 years, or both

What to do if you’re guilty

Well, it depends on which offence. 

If you’ve gone and punched an LHDN officer, there’s not much you can do except tell your family you’re going on a one-year holiday in Sungai Buloh.

However, for certain offences, there is currently a Special Voluntary Disclosure Programme (SVDP) that allows taxpayers who want a clean slate with future tax payments to come forward and settle their taxes without fear of penalty.

The program is set to run until May 2024, so please take this chance to settle your tax affairs. 

By the way: If you would like go study taxation beyond the scope of this article, our information was condensed from the Income Tax Act 1967 and LHDN’s official page on offences & punishments.

5 action items to keep you tax compliant

Say you’re the forgetful or clumsy type.

Here are five steps you can take to make sure you stay on top of tax requirements.

1. Take advantage of LHDN’s digital platforms

LHDN’s e-Filing platform makes submitting tax returns, carrying out payment, checking outstanding balance, and updating taxpayer information extremely easy.

If you don’t already have an account, we highly encourage you to register and make use of it.

2. Go digital with documentation

Physical receipts and invoices can be lost or damaged, while digital copies saved in a reliable cloud database like a Google Drive account will likely remain there until the end of time, which means they can be accessed whenever you need them. 

3. File your returns on time 

This is a big one, and is the downfall of so many people.

Stop procrastinating!

Get your tax obligations over with as soon as possible to avoid forgetting and ducking it to avoid penalties, only to have it snowball from a big problem into a huge problem.

4. Keep an eye out for LHDN emails in your inbox

In the event there are any changes or you are being notified of something important, LHDN will reach out to you via your email address. Be sure to open the email, as it’s considered read once sent.

5. Seek professional help If required 

If you are unsure or would rather outsource this headache, it may be worthwhile to seek the assistance of a tax professional for compliance and tax advice, which brings us to the final section of the article.


Let MISHU ensure you meet your tax obligations

HOBD Adrian

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