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About PAN Card :-
Permanent Account Number (PAN) was introduced by the Indian Income Tax Department in order to facilitate easy retrieval of information and matching information relating to an assessee's investment, payment of taxes, raising of loans, assessment, tax demand, tax arrears etc. The Permanent Account Number (PAN) is unique, national, and permanent. It is unaffected by a change of address, even between states in India. As a universal identification key the PAN helps to monitor all financial transactions of high net worth individuals and thereby indirectly prevent tax evasion. Pan Card is issued by the Indian Income Tax Department under the supervision of the Central Board for Direct Taxes (CBDT) and is almost equivalent to a national identification number. It also serves as an important ID proof. From 1 January 2005 it has been made mandatory to quote the Permanent Account Number (PAN) on challans for any payments due to Income Tax Department. It is also compulsory to quote PAN in all documents pertaining to most financial transactions.

What is PAN Card :-
Permanent Account Number (PAN) is a ten-digit alphanumeric number, issued in the form of a laminated tamper proof card, by the Income Tax Department of India. The Permanent Account Number (PAN) is unique to an individual or entity and it is valid across India. Permanent Account Number once allotted to an individual or entity is unaffected by a change of name, address within or across states in India or other factors. Meaning of PAN card A typical Permanent Account Number is would look like AFZPK7190K.. The logic behind the array of numbers and alphabets is as follows: First three characters i.e. "AFZ" in the above PAN are alphabetic series running from AAA to ZZZ. Fourth character i.e. "P" in the above PAN represents the status of the PAN holder. "P" stands for Individual.
"F" stands for Firm.
"C" stands for Company.
"H" stands for HUF.
"A" stands for AOP.
"T" stands for TRUST etc.
Fifth character i.e. "K" in the above PAN represents first character of the PAN holder's last name/surname. Next four characters i.e. "7190" in the above PAN are sequential number running from 0001 to 9999. Last character i.e. "K" in the above PAN is an alphabetic check digit.

Why PAN Card is Required?
Purpose of having PAN card :-
The purpose of having a pan card is strengthened from the fact that from 1 January 2005 it has been made mandatory to quote Permanent Account Number (PAN) on challans for any payments due to Income Tax Department (ITD), while filing returns of income and all correspondence with any income tax authority. Thus Purpose of having Pan Card has become mandatory.
Benefits of PAN card :-
One of the benefits of pan card is eligibility of an individual or entity to enter into transactions of sale or purchase of assets as mentioned below:-
PAN is required to be quoted in the deed made during sale or purchase of any immovable property valued at five laksh rupees or more. Copy of PAN is required during Sale or purchase of a motor vehicles having more than two wheels excluding detachable side-car attached to the two wheeler.
Benefits of PAN card also extends to various banking transactions as below :-
PAN is required for opening a bank account in both private and nationalized banks. Banks, private or nationalized, emphasize on importance of PAN to entertain Time Deposit exceeding fifty thousand rupees. PAN is also required while making payment in cash for purchase of bank drafts or pay orders or banker's cheques for an amount aggregating to fifty thousand rupees or more during any one day. Deposit in cash aggregating to fifty thousand rupees or more with a bank during any one day requires PAN.

Importance of PAN is emphasized during transactions involving other financial instruments as follows:
Deposit, exceeding fifty thousand rupees, in any account with Post Office Savings Bank. Contract of a value exceeding one laksh rupees for sale or purchase of securities.

Certain Service providers also emphasize on the importance of PAN:-
Making an application for installation of a telephone connection (including a cellular telephone connection) requires a PAN. PAN is required when payment to hotels and restaurants against their bills for an amount exceeding twenty-five thousand rupees at any one time is made. Payment in cash in connection with travel to any foreign country of an amount exceeding twenty-five thousand rupees at any one time also requires PAN.

Advantage of PAN:-
Advantage of PAN includes deduction of fraudulent transactions, reduce tax evasion, transparency in transactions between buyer and seller.

Who Should Apply for a PAN Card ?
This Page deals with several common questions regarding who can apply for a PAN card be it new or duplicate or for corrections.

Who should apply for a PAN card ?
All existing assessees or taxpayers or persons who are required to furnish a return of income, either on behalf of self or others, must obtain PAN. Any person, who intends to enter into economic or financial transactions where quoting PAN is mandatory, must also obtain PAN.

Can minor apply for a PAN card ?
Section 160 of IT Act, 1961 provides that a non-resident, minor, lunatic, idiot, and court of wards and such other persons may be represented through a Representative Assessee. In such cases, application for PAN will be made by the Representative Assessee.

Who should apply for a new PAN card ?
One should apply for new PAN Card when the applicant has never applied for a Permanent Account Number (PAN) or does not have a PAN allotted to him. Refer article to know How to apply new PAN card ?

Who should apply for a change or correction in PAN card ?
One should make an application when he/she wants to make some changes or corrections in their existing PAN details such as
Change in applicant name, on account of marriage or due to spelling mistake
Change in father's name
Change in date of birth
Refer article to know How to apply for change in PAN card, correction in PAN card ?

Who should apply for a duplicate PAN card ?
One should apply for a duplicate PAN card when a Permanent Account Number (PAN) has already been allotted to the applicant but he/she requires a new duplicate PAN Card due to the following reason:
Lost the PAN Card
Damaged the PAN Card
Wants to change from old to new tamper proof PAN card.
Refer article to know How to apply duplicate PAN card ?

Can a person obtain or use more than one PAN?
Obtaining or possessing more than one (Permanent Account Number) PAN is against the law.

How will the new PAN card be delivered to me?
The PAN card processing authorities to whom the application is submitted will ensure delivery of new PAN card at the address indicated by you in the application Form.

How to Apply New PAN Card
Please note that one should apply for new Pan Card when the applicant is a resident Indian citizen, and has never applied for a Permanent Account Number (PAN) or does not have a PAN allotted to him. Should you have any doubts, refer article Who should apply for a PAN card ? for more details before you read further.

What is form 49A?
Form 49A is a Application for Allotment of Permanent Account Number in case of Indian Citizen/ Indian Companies/Entities incorporated in India/Unincorporated entities formed in India. To apply PAN card online, click here to fill the online application form.

What are the procedures involved in applying for a new PAN card?
Fill - Fill the online application form – form 49A
Pay - Make Payment online
Sign - Download the prefilled application and affix photos and signature.
Send - Send the signed application and supporting documents by post or courier to the address provided in the welcome mail.Click here for more details.

What documents will serve as proof of identity in case of individual applicants, including minors for new PAN application using form 49A? Following documents are accepted as proof of identity:-
Elector's Photo Identity Card
Driving License
Passport
Ration Card having photograph of the applicant
Certificate of Identity in original signed by a Gazetted Officer
Certificate of Identity in original signed by a Member of Parliament
Certificate of Identity in original signed by a Member of Legislative Assembly
Certificate of Identity in original signed by a Municipal Councilor
Arm's License
AADHAAR Card issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India
Photo Identity Card issued by the Central Government or a State Government or a Public Sector Undertaking
Pensioner Card having photograph of the applicant
Central Government Health Scheme Card
Ex-servicemen Contributory Heath Scheme photo card
Bank Certificate in original on letter head from the branch

What documents will serve as proof of address for individual applicants, including minors for new PAN application using form 49A? Following documents are accepted as proof of address:-
Elector's Photo Identity Card
Driving License
Passport
Bank Account Statement
Credit Card Statement
Landline Telephone or Broadband Connection Bill
Employer Certificate in original
Electricity Bill
Depository Account Statement
Latest Property Tax Assessment Order
Certificate of Address in original signed by a Gazetted Officer
Certificate of Address in original signed by a Member of Parliament
Certificate of Address in original signed by a Member of Legislative Assembly
Certificate of Address in original signed by a Municipal Councilor
Water Bill
Consumer gas connection card or book or piped gas bill
Passport of the Spousev
Post Office Passbook having address of the applicant
Domicile Certificate issued by the Government
AADHAAR Card issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India
Allotment Letter of Accommodation issued by the Central or State Government
Property Registration document

What documents will serve as proof of date of birth for individual applicants, including minors for new PAN application using form 49A? Following Documents are accepted as proof of date of birth:-
Birth Certificate
Pension Payment Order
Marriage Certificate issued by Registrar of Marriages
Matriculation Certificate
Domicile Certificate issued by the Government
Affidavit sworn before a Magistrate stating the date of birth
Driving License
Passport