PAN Card Frequently Asked Questions

What are the different types of PAN Card?

PAN Card is a tool that centralizes the monitoring and updating of all financial transactions and other related activities undertaken by a taxpayer. Under the Indian taxation system, taxpayers can be either individuals or entities, both local and foreign. As such it is but natural that there are different types of PAN Card.

For individuals

This type of PAN Card is the most common and is issued purposely for the use of individuals. It can be obtained by filing up Form 49A. Included in this classification are students and minors as they are also recognized by law to be eligible for the issuance of a PAN Card.

For Persons of Indian Origin and Non-Resident Indians

Both Non-resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) are individuals who are now living outside of India. They are members of the Indian Diaspora, accounting for about 31 million, according to the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. These individuals have Indian descent or are Indians by birth. To obtain their PAN, PIOs and NRIs must also apply using Form 49A.

For Non-Resident Entities and Overseas Citizens of India

Overseas Citizens of India are Indian nationals who have already migrated to other countries except Bangladesh and Pakistan and have secured citizenship in that country. Non-resident Entities, on the other hand, are Indian companies or firms that have been incorporated or formed outside India. Both OCIs and NREs will have to fill up Form 49AA when applying for PAN.

For foreign entities required to pay taxes in India

This type of PAN Card is reserved for foreign firms and companies that are registered or incorporated in other countries, doing business in India. They will need to fill up Form 49AA to obtain their own PAN.

For Indian companies

Local Indian companies, firms, and corporate entities can have their own PAN to facilitate their tax-related and financial transactions.

Who can apply for a PAN?

The following Indian citizens can apply for a Permanent Account Number:

  • Individuals – Should be an Indian citizen.
  • Hindu Undivided Families – The head of the family can apply for PAN on the family’s behalf.
  • Minors – This is especially true if the said minor is being nominated for a property as well as to make investments in the minor’s name. The parents of the minor can apply for PAN on the minor’s behalf. Supporting documents for both parents and the minor should accompany the application.
  • Mentally-retarded individuals –The application can be made by their caregivers or representatives on their behalf.
  • Partnership firms – Requires a copy of the Certificate of Registration or a copy of the Partnership Deed to apply for PAN.
  • Limited Liability Partnerships – Requires a copy of the Certificate of Registration to avail of PAN.
  • Non-resident Indians (NRIs) – A copy of the NRI’s bank statement of account issued by the bank in his or her present country of residence is needed for PAN application.
  • Companies – A copy of the Certificate of Registration is required for PAN application.
  • Trusts – Requires Certificate of Registration Number and Trust Deed to apply for PAN.
  • Local authorities – Submit a copy of the agreement.
  • Artificial Judicial Persons – Requires government establishing identity of registration certificate.
  • Association of persons – Requires copy of Certificate of Registration.

The following foreign citizens and entities can also apply for PAN.

• Foreign citizens – Requires proofs of identity and address.
• Foreign entities – Requires photocopy of foreign Certificate of Registration and attested by the MEA, Indian Embassy, or High Commission. PAN application also requires copy of Certificate of Registration obtained in India.

Is it mandatory to obtain a PAN Card?

For all individuals and entities that must submit their income returns, a PAN Card is mandatory. As long as a transaction involves dealing with the Income Tax Department, a PAN Card is an absolute must. It is also mandatory in the following instances.

  • Buying or selling of an immovable property with a current market value of at least Rs 10 Lakh.
  • Buying or selling of a motor vehicle, excluding two-wheeled motor vehicles.
  • Making a time deposit with cooperative banks, NBFC companies, the Post Office, and Nidhi.
  • Making time deposits that accumulate to a total of more than Rs 5 Lakh for the whole year.
  • Opening a new bank account except a Time Deposit and a Basic Savings Bank Deposit Account.
  • Cash expenses incurred at a restaurant or hotel exceeding Rs 50,000/-.
  • Buying bank drafts, banker’s checks, and pay orders in excess of Rs 50,000/- on any one day.
  • Making a cash deposit in excess of Rs 50,000/- with a banking company in one day.
  • Buying or selling of securities with a value of greater than Rs 1 Lakh.
  • Cash expenses incurred at any one time related to foreign travel whether it is the purchase of transport fares or the payment of fees to travel agents in excess of Rs 50,000/-.
  • Applying for a credit card whether it is from a banking company or any other recognized institution or organization for credit cards.
  • Buying mutual fund units in excess of Rs 50,000/-.
  • Buying or selling of shares of an unlisted company where the value is in excess of Rs 1 Lakh for every transaction.
  • Opening of a demat account.
  • Buying and selling of any item, product, goods, or services in excess of Rs 2 Lakh for every transaction.
  • Purchasing of prepaid instruments such as cash cards and other instruments that are issued under the government’s Payment & Settlement Act provided the cash payments accumulate to more than Rs 50,000/- in one year.
  • Paying life insurance premium amounting to more than Rs 50,000/- in one year.

You can find out more about the uses of a PAN card here.

How long does it take to get a new PAN Card?

The process for completing the application for a new PAN Card typically takes several minutes. However, the actual processing of the Permanent Account Number will usually take a few weeks. Generally, the actual delivery of the PAN Card will be within 15 working days from the time you receive your coupon or confirmation number. The length of time from application to the sending of the coupon number greatly varies. Nevertheless, from the time of application to the time of actual receipt of the PAN Card, you can expect about a month or so to have it completed. Do understand that the accuracy of the residence address you provided in the application will also be a factor in the speed of the PAN Card delivery as this will be sent via Registered Mail with the Indian Post Office.

How can I get a duplicate PAN Card?

If you have lost your PAN Card, getting a duplicate is a relatively easy process. However, the very first thing you must do is to file a First Information Report as this will provide the legal basis for the issuance of your duplicate PAN Card. Once you’ve secured your FIR, you can then request for your PAN to be reprinted. To do this you will have to furnish your PAN service provider the details of your PAN Card, but most importantly the 10-character string that constitutes your Permanent Account Number. You will also have to submit a copy of the FIR as an attachment.
The procedure is as follows.

• Logon to your PAN Card provider and navigate to the section on Reprint of PAN Card.
• Make the necessary selection as to the type of PAN you would like to replace or obtain a duplicate of.
• Fill up all the information requested in the online form.
• Upload supporting documents such as proofs of identity, date of birth, and address as well as valid photograph.
• You will then have to pay the corresponding fees.
• A 15-digit acknowledgement receipt will be given as reference for your transaction.
• Wait for your replacement or duplicate PAN Card within 2 weeks.

If your PAN Card was severely damaged, you can also follow the same procedure in filing for a duplicate PAN Card.

For companies, trusts, or even HUFs that may require additional PAN Cards for their other members, the procedure is typically the same. Do take note, however, that the Permanent Account Number across these multiple PAN Cards is the same.

Can I use more than one PAN card?

The straightforward answer is, “NO”, you cannot use more than one PAN Card. Your Permanent Account Number (PAN) Card is your link to the taxpayer database of the Income Tax Department. If you have more than one PAN Card, there will be a mixture of information at the ITD. If you get caught you will be fined Rs 10,000/- plus a Legal Notice from the Indian government.

It is not uncommon, however, for some individuals to have multiple PANs though through no fault of their own. In many instances this resulted from multiple applications where the individual simply couldn’t wait long enough for his application to be processed and the PAN Card be delivered that he applies again. In such cases it is best to wait for the delivery of your PAN Card. Besides, you are also given an acknowledgment number which you can use to communicate with your PAN Card provider.

Of course there are those who purposely obtain more than one PAN Card for the purpose of cheating the government. In such cases you’ll definitely be meted a penalty.

What is Form 49A?

This is the official application form used by Indian residents in securing a Permanent Account Number. It is composed of several sections, making it a lot easier for applicants to fill in the form. Indians currently residing in India, Non-Resident Indians, Persons of Indian Origin, and Indian companies are expected to utilize Form 49A in applying for their respective PANs.

Why do NRIs need a PAN Card?

Non-Resident Indians or NRIs are required to have their PAN Card and to quote their Permanent Account Number whenever they engage in any of the following financial transactions in India.

• Receiving income or compensation for work or service provided either in the form of professional fee or salary
• Applying for the issuance of financial instruments such as credit cards as well as debit cards
• Depositing with or withdrawing from a bank the amount of which exceeds Rs 50,000/-
• Opening a bank account
• Investing in Mutual Funds
• Opening a demat account
• Applying for foreign remittance
• Applying for financial assistance or loan
• Selling or buying immovable properties or assets
• Applying for visa or passport
• Trading in the Indian stock market