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THE WEALTH-TAX ACT, 1957

Title : THE WEALTH-TAX ACT, 1957

Year : 1957


 
(1) Any person,-

(a) Objecting to the amount of 1*[net wealth] determined under this Act; or

(b) Objecting to the amount of wealth-tax determined as payable by him under this Act; or

(c) Denying his liability to be assessed under this Act; or

(d) Objecting to any penalty imposed by the Wealth-tax officer under 2*[section 15B or] section 18; or

(e) Objecting to any order of the Wealth-tax Officer under sub - section (2) of section 20; or

(f) Objecting to any penalty imposed by the Wealth-tax officer under the provisions of 3*[section 221] of the Income-tax Act as applied under section 32 for the purposes of wealth-tax; 2*[or]

(g) Objecting to any order made by the Wealth-tax Officer under section 22 treating him as the agent of a person residing outside India; or

(h) Objecting to any order of the Wealth-tax Officer under section 35 having the effect of enhancing the assessment or reducing a refund or refusing to allow the claim made by the assessee under the said section; or

(ha) Objecting to any order of the Valuation Officer under section 35 having the effect of enhancing the valuation of any asset or refusing to allow the claim made by the assessee under the said section; or]

(i) Objecting to an order of the [Wealth tax Officer or Valuation Officer] 4* imposing a fine under sub-section (2) of section 37;] may appeal to the Appellate Assistant Commissioner against the assessment or order, as the case may be, in the prescribed form and verified in the prescribed manner.

(2) An appeal shall be presented within thirty days of the receipt of the notice of demand relating to the assessment or penalty objected to, or the date on which any order objected to, is communicated to him, but the Appellate Assistant Commissioner may admit an appeal after the expiration of the period aforesaid if he is satisfied that the appellant had sufficient cause for not presenting the appeal within that period.

(2A) Where a return has been filed by an asses see, no appeal under this section shall be admitted unless at the time of filing of the appeal he has paid the tax due on the net wealth returned by him:-

Provided that, on an application made by the appellant in this behalf, the Appellate Assistant Commissioner may, for any good and sufficient reason to be recorded in writing, exempt him from the operation of the provision of this sub-section.]

(3) The Appellate Assistant Commissioner shall fix a day and place for the hearing of the appeal and may, from time to time, adjourn the hearing.

(3A) If the valuation of any asset is objected to in an appeal under clause (a) of sub-section (1), the Appellate Assistant Commissioner shall,-

(a) In a case where such valuation has been made by a Valuation Officer under section 16A, give such Valuation Officer an opportunity of being heard;

(b) In any other case, on a request being made in this behalf by the Wealth-tax Officer, give an opportunity of being heard to any Valuation Officer nominated for the purpose by the Wealth-tax Officer.]

(4) The Appellate Assistant Commissioner may-

(a) At the hearing of an appeal, allow an appellant to go into any ground of appeal not specified in the grounds of appeal;

(b) Before disposing of an appeal, make such further inquiry as he thinks fit or cause further inquiry to be made by the 5*[Wealth-tax Officer or, as the case may be, the Valuation Officer].

(5) In disposing of an appeal, the Appellate Assistant Commission- er may pass such order as he thinks fit which may include an order enhancing the assessment or penalty:

Provided that no order enhancing the assessment or penalty shall be made unless the person affected thereby has been given a reasonable opportunity of showing cause against such enhance- ment.

(5A) In disposing of an appeal, the Appellate Assistant Commissioner may consider and decide any matter arising out of the proceedings in which the order appealed against was passed, notwithstanding that such matter was not raised before the Appellate Assistant Commissioner by the appellant.

(5B) The order of the Appellate Assistant Commissioner disposing of the appeal shall be in writing and shall state the points for determination, the decision thereon and the reasons for the decision.]

(6) A copy of every order passed by the Appellate Assistant Commissioner under this section shall be forwarded to the appellant and the Commissioner.

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1 Subs. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 22, for "his net wealth" (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Ins. by s. 22, ibid. (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

3 Subs. by s. 22, ibid., for "sub-section (1) of section 46"(w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

4 Ins. & Subs. by Act 45 of 1972, s. 11 (w.e.f. 1-1-1973).

5 Ins. by Act 41 of 1975, s. 94 (w.e.f. 1-10-75).

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(1) 4* An asses see objecting to an order passed by the Appellate Assistant Commissioner under section 18 or section 18A or section 23 or sub-section (2) of section 37, or to an order passed by the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner under section 18A, may appeal to the Appellate Tribunal within sixty days of the date on which the order is communicated to him.

(2) The Commissioner may, if he is not satisfied as to the correctness of any order passed by an Appellate Assistant Commissioner under section 23, direct the Wealth-tax Officer to appeal to the Appellate Tribunal against such order, and such appeal may be made at any time before the expiry of sixty days of the date on which the order is communicated to the Commissioner.

(2A) The Wealth-tax Officer or the asses see, as the case may be, on receipt of notice that an appeal against the order of the Appellate Assistant Commissioner has been preferred under sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) by the other party, may, notwithstanding that he may not have appealed against such order or any part thereof, within thirty days of the receipt of the notice, file a memorandum of cross objections, verified in the prescribed manner, against any part of the order of the Appellate Assistant Commissioner and such memorandum shall be disposed of by the Appellate Tribunal as if it were an appeal presented within the time specified in sub-section (1) or sub-section (2).

(3) 2*The Appellate Tribunal may admit an appeal or permit the filing of a memorandum of cross objections after the expiry of the relevant period referred to in sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) or sub-section (2A), if it is satisfied that there was sufficient cause for not presenting it within that period.

(4) An appeal to the Appellate Tribunal shall be in the prescribed form and shall be verified in the prescribed manner and shall, except in the case of an appeal referred to in sub-section (2), be accompanied by 3*[a fee of one hundred and twenty-five rupees].

(5) The Appellate Tribunal may, after giving both parties to the appeal an opportunity of being heard, pass such orders thereon as it thinks fit, and any such orders may include an order enhancing the assessment or penalty:

Provided that no order enhancing an assessment or penalty shall be made unless the person affected thereby has been given a reasonable opportunity of showing cause against such enhancement.

(6) (a) Where the appellant object to the valuation of any property, the Appellate Tribunal may, and if the appellant so requires, shall, refer the question of the disputed value to the arbitration of two valuers, one of whom shall be nominated by the appellant and the other by the respondent, and the Tribunal shall, so far as that question is concerned, pass its orders under sub-section
(5) conformably to the decision of the valuers:

Provided that-

(i) Where the appellant or the respondent does not nominate any valuer within the time specified by the Appellate Tribunal or within such further time as the Appellate Tribunal may allow, the Appellate Tribunal may nominate a valuer on his behalf;

(ii) If there is a difference of opinion between the two valuers, the matter shall be referred to a third valuer nominated by agreement, or failing agreement, by the Appellate Tribunal, and the decision of that valuer on the question of valuation shall be final;

(iii) Where any person has at any time expressed any opinion on the valuation of any property to which the provisions of this clause apply, such person shall not be nominated as a valuer in relation to that property.

(b) The valuers to whom a reference under clause (a) has been made by the Appellate Tribunal shall communicate their decision to the Appellate Tribunal within six months of the date of such reference or within such further time as the Tribunal may allow:
Provided that if the decision of the valuers is not communicated within the period aforesaid, the Appellate Tribunal may order that the reference made under this sub-section shall be deemed to be withdrawn and proceed to dispose of the case on the evidence before it, including the report of either of the valuers if any such report has been submitted.

(7) The extent to which the costs of arbitration proceedings (including a case where a reference is deemed to be withdrawn) under sub-section (6) shall be borne by the appellant or the respondent shall be at the discretion of the Appellate Tribunal.

(8) The valuers may, in disposing of any matter referred to them for arbitration under this section, hold or cause to be held such enquiry as they think fit and after giving the appellant and the respondent an opportunity of being heard, make such decision as they think fit and shall communicate such decision in writing to the Appellate Tribunal.

(8A) The valuers appointed under this section, while acting as such, shall have all powers of a Civil Court while trying a suit under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908.) in respect of the following matters, namely:-

(i) Summoning and enforcing the attendance of any person and examining him on oath;

(9) A copy of every order passed by the Appellate Tribunal under this section shall be forwarded to the asses see and the Commissioner.

(10) Save as provided in section 27, any order passed by the Appellate Tribunal on appeal shall be final.

(11) The provisions of 1*[sub-sections (1), (4) and (5) of section 255] of the Income-tax Act shall apply to the Appellate Tribunal in the discharge of its functions under this Act as they apply to it in the discharge of its functions under the Income-tax Act.

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1 Ins. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 23 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Subs. by s. 23, ibid., for sub-section (3) (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

3 Subs. by Act 42 of 1970, s. 62, for "a fee of rupees one hundred "(w.e.f. 1-4-1971).

4 Subs. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 23, for sub-sections (6), (7) and (8) (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

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(1) The Commissioner may, either of his own motion or on application made by an asses see in this behalf, call for the record of any proceeding under this Act in which an order has been passed by any authority subordinate to him, and may make such inquiry, or cause such inquiry to be made, and, subject to the provisions of this Act, pass such order thereon, not being an order prejudicial to the asses see, as the Commissioner thinks fit:

Provided that the Commissioner shall not revise any order under this sub-section in any case-

(a) Where an appeal against the order lies to the Appellate Assistant Commissioner or to the Appellate Tribunal, the time within which such appeal can be made has not expired or in the case of an appeal to the Appellate Tribunal the asses see has not waived his right of appeal;

(b) Where the order is the subject of an appeal before the Appellate Assistant Commissioner or the Appellate Tribunal;

(c) Where the application is made by the asses see for such revision, unless-

(i) The application is accompanied by a fee of twenty-five rupees; and

(ii) The application is made within one year from the date of the order sought to be revised or within such further period as the Commissioner may think fit to allow on being satisfied that the asses see was prevented by sufficient cause from making the application within that period; and

(d) Where the order is sought to be revised by the Commissioner of his own motion, if such order is made more than one year previously.

Explanation.-For the purposes of this sub-section,-

(a) The Appellate Assistant Commissioner shall be deemed to be an authority subordinate to the Commissioner; and

(b) An order by the Commissioner declining to interfere shall be deemed not to be an order prejudicial to the asses see.

(2) Without prejudice to the provisions contained in sub-section (1), the Commissioner may call for and examine the record of any proceeding under this Act, and if he considers that any order passed therein by a Wealth-tax Officer is erroneous in so far as it is prejudicial to the interests of revenue, he may, after giving the asses see an opportunity of being heard, and after making or causing to be made such inquiry as he deems necessary pass such order thereon as the circumstances of the case justify, including an order enhancing or modifying the assessment or cancelling it and directing a fresh assessment.

(3) No order shall be made under sub-section (2) after the expiry of two years from the date of the order sought to be revised.

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (3), an order in revision under sub-section (2) may be passed at any time in the case of an order which has been passed in consequence of, or to give effect to, any finding or direction contained in an order of the Appellate Tribunal, the High Court or the Supreme Court.

Explanation.-In computing the period of limitation for the purposes of sub-section (3), the time taken in giving an opportunity to the asses see to be re-heard under the proviso to section 39 and any period during which any proceeding under this section is stayed by an order or injunction of any court shall be excluded.



(1) Any asses see objecting to 1*[an order passed by the Commissioner under section 18 or sub-section (2) of section 25] may appeal to the Appellate Tribunal within sixty days of the date on which the order is communicated to him.

(2) An appeal to the Appellate Tribunal under sub-section (1) shall be in the prescribed form and shall be verified in the prescribed manner and shall be accompanied by 2*[a fee of one hundred and twenty-five rupees].

(3) The provisions of sub-sections (3) and (5) to (10) inclusive of section 24 shall apply in relation to any appeal under this section as they apply in relation to any appeal under that section.

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1 Subs. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 25, for certain words (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Subs. by Act 42 of 1970, s. 63 (w.e.f. 1-4-1971).

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(1) The asses see or the Commissioner may, within sixty days of the date upon which he is served with notice of an order under section 24 or section 26, by application in the prescribed form, accompanied, where the application is made by the asses see, by 2*[a fee of one hundred and twenty-five rupees], require the Appellate Tribunal to refer to the High Court any question of law arising out of such order and, subject to the other provisions contained in this section, the Appellate Tribunal shall, within one hundred and twenty days of the receipt of such application, draw up a statement of the case and refer it to the High Court.

(2) The Appellate Tribunal may, if it is satisfied that the applicant was prevented by sufficient cause from presenting the application within the period specified in sub-section (1), allow it to be presented within a further period not exceeding thirty days.]

(3) If, on an application made under sub-section (1), the Appellate Tribunal,-

(a) Refuses to state a case on the ground that no question of law arises; or

(b) Rejects it on the ground that it is time barred;the applicant may, within 3*[ninety days] from the date on which he is served with a notice of refusal or rejection, as the case may be, apply to the High Court, and the High Court may, if it is not satisfied with the correctness of the decision of the Appellate Tribunal, require the Appellate Tribunal to state the case to the High Court, and on receipt of such requisition the Appellate Tribunal shall state the case:

Provided
that, if in any case where the Appellate Tribunal has been required by an asses see to state a case the Appellate Tribunal refuses to do so on the ground that no question of law arises, the asses see may, within thirty days from the date on which he receives notice of refusal to state the case, withdraw his application, and if he does so, the fee paid by him under sub-section (1) shall be refunded to him.

(3A) If, on an application made under this section the Appellate Tribunal is of the opinion that, on account of a conflict in the decisions of the High Courts in respect of any particular question of law, it is expedient that a reference should be made direct to the Supreme Court, the Appellate Tribunal may draw up a statement of the case and refer it through its President direct to the Supreme Court.]

(4) The statement to the High Court 1*[or the Supreme Court]shall set forth the facts, the determination of the Appellate Tribunal and the question of law which arises out of the case.

(5) If the High Court 1*[or the Supreme Court] is not satisfied that the case as stated is sufficient to enable it to determine the question of law raised thereby, it may require the Appellate Tribunal to make such modifications therein as it may direct.

(6) The High Court 1*[or the Supreme Court], upon hearing any such case, shall decide the question of law raised therein, and in doing so, may, if it thinks fit, alter the form of the question of law and shall deliver judgment thereon containing the ground on which such decision is founded and shall send a copy of the judgment under the seal of the Court and the signature of the Registrar to the Appellate Tribunal and the Appellate Tribunal shall pass such orders as are necessary to dispose of the case conformably to such judgment.

(7) The costs of any reference to the High Court or the Supreme Court which shall not include the fee for making the reference, shall be in the discretion of the Court.]

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1 Ins. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 27 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Subs. by Act 42 of 1970, s. 64 (w.e.f. 1-4-1971).

3 Subs. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 26, for "three months" (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

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When a case has been stated to the High Court under section 27, it shall be heard by a Bench of not less than two Judges of the High Court and shall be decided in accordance with the opinion of such Judges or of the majority of such Judges, if any:-

Provided that where there is no such majority, the Judges shall state the point of law upon which they differ and the case shall then be heard upon that point only by one or more of the Judges of the High Court, and such point shall be decided according to the opinion of the majority of the Judges who have heard the case, including those who first heard it.



(1) An appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court from any judgment of the High Court delivered on a case stated under section 27 in any case which the High Court certifies as a fit case for appeal to the Supreme Court.

(2) Where the judgment of the High Court is varied or reversed on appeal under this section, effect shall be given to the order of the Supreme Court in the manner provided in sub-section (6) of section 27.

(3) The High Court may, on application made to it for the execution of any order of the Supreme Court in respect of any costs awarded by it, transmit the order for execution to any court subordinate to the High Court.

29A. Tax to be paid not withstanding reference, etc

Notwithstanding that a reference has been made to the High Court or the Supreme Court, or an appeal has been preferred to the Supreme Court, wealth-tax shall be payable in accordance with the assessment made in the case.

29B. Definition of High Court
 

In this Chapter, "High Court"means-

(i) In relation to any State, the High Court of that State;

1*[(ii) in relation to the Union territory of Delhi, the High Court of Delhi;2*

3*[(iii) In relation to the Union territories of Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram, the Gauhati High Court (the High Court of Assam, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Manipur and Tripura);]

(iv) In relation to the Union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the High Court at Calcutta;

(v) In relation to the Union territory of 4*[Lakshadeep] the High Court of Kerala;

(vi) In relation to the Union territories of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Goa, Daman and Diu, the High Court at Bombay;

(vii) In relation to the Union territory of Pondicherry, the High Court at Madras;

(viii) In relation to the Union territory of Chandigarh, the High Court of Punjab and Haryana]

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1 Subs. by the Punjab Reorganisation and Delhi High Court
(Adaptation of Laws on Union Subjects) Order, 1968, for cl. (ii) (w.e.f. 1-11-1966).

2 Omitted by the State of Himachal Pradesh (Adaptation of Law on Union Subjects) Order, 1973 (w.e.f. 25-1-1971).

3 Subs. by the North-Eastern Areas (Reorganisation) (Adaptation of Laws on Union Subjects) Order, 1974. (w.e.f. 21-1-1972).

4 Subs. by the Laccadive, Minicoy and Amindives Islands (Alteration of Name) Adaptation of Laws Order, 1974 (w.e.f. 1-11-1978).

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Last updated on September, 2016

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