What is a TAN Card and How to Apply for it?

What is TAN card

A TAN is important for all those people who deduct or collect tax at source. It is important to quote a TAN card for all the TDS/TCS returns. A penalty of Rs 10,000 has to be paid by the user who fails to apply for it or does not comply with any of the provisions written under section 203A of the Income Tax Act.

In this blog, we will discuss everything about TAN cards and how to apply for them in detail.

What is a TAN Card?

TAN or Tax Deduction and Collection Account Number is a 10 digit alphanumeric unique number, issued to those who are required to collect and deduct tax under Section 203A of the Indian Income Tax Act 1961. A TAN card is an important document to be quoted for a TDS return. 

What is the Importance of a TAN card?

A TAN card is a mandatory document to be quoted for Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) and Tax Collected at Source (TCS). Without a TAN card, TDS and TCS can’t be accepted by TIN facilitation centres.

It must be noted that banks don’t accept challans for TCS/TDS if one fails to quote a TAN card. If one fails to apply for a TAN card or quote the same in any of the required documents, he/she will have to bear Rs. 10,000 as a penalty.

Why is it Necessary to Apply for a TAN card?

Under the provisions of Section 203A of the Income Tax Act, it is mandatory for people who deduct or collect tax at the source to apply for a TAN card. The section 203A makes it mandatory for individuals to quote a TAN card for all the TCS/TDS returns, TDS/TCS challan and TDS/TCS certificates. As per the section, a fine of Rs. 10,000 has to be paid by anyone who fails to comply with any of the provisions written under the section or fails to apply for a TAN card.

Who can Apply for a TAN Card?

A TAN card is mandatory for the following applicants- 

  • Individuals who deduct or collect tax at source
  • Company
  • Hindu Undivided Family
  • Association of Persons
  • Firm
  • Central Government/ State Government/ Autonomous Bodies/ Local authorities/ Statutory Bodies

What is the Structure of a TAN card?

The structure of a TAN card is created out of the following components- 

  • A TAN card carries a unique 10-digit alphanumeric number. The first four characters of the number are letters, the next 5 characters are numerals and the rest of the last character is a letter again. Example- UTT75759P
  • The first 3 characters of a TAN card represent the state or city where the TAN is issued
  • The 4th character of the TAN card states the first initial of the deductor
  • The next 5 characters are numerics
  • The remaining last character is a letter


How to Apply for a TAN Card?

There are two ways to apply for a TAN card- Online and Offline. The next section of the blog will take you through the process to apply for a TAN card. 

How to Apply for a TAN Card Online?

Individuals, firms, associations, etc. can apply for a TAN card online by following the given steps-

  • Visit the official website of NSDL-TIN
  • Click on ‘TAN’ under ‘Services’
  • Click on ‘Apply Online’ and select ‘New TAN’
  • Read the guidelines and fill the Form 49B
  • Click on ‘Submit’
  • Upon submission, an acknowledgement screen will appear that contains the following-
  1. A 14 digit acknowledgement number
  2. Applicant’s name
  3. Applicant’s status
  4. Contact details
  5. Payment details
  6. Space of signature
  • Get the printout of the acknowledgement slip and send it to NSDL along with the supporting documents to the following address- 

NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited, 

5th Floor, Mantri Sterling

Plot No. 341, Survey No. 997/8,

Model Colony, 

Near Deep Bungalow Chowk,

Pune- 411016


  • When sending the TAN acknowledgement slip, superscribe the envelope with ‘APPLICATION FOR TAN- Acknowledgement Number’ (Example- ‘APPLICATION TAN- 12345678910112’
  • Both the acknowledgement slip and demand draft should be sent to the NSDL within 15 days from the date of the online application
  • The application will be only processed on receipt of duly signed acknowledgement and realisation of payment





How to Apply for a TAN Card Offline?

An applicant needs to visit the official TIN facilitation centre of National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL) and connect with the concerned official to apply for a TAN card. 

How to Check the TAN Card Status?

Once the TAN application is submitted, an applicant can check the status of the TAN Card by following the given instructions- 

  • Visit the official website of NSDL-TIN
  • Select TAN from the ‘Services’
  • Click on ‘Know Status of Your Application’
  • Select the ‘Application Type’ and enter the ’14 digit acknowledgement number’
  • Click on ‘Submit’
  • The TAN card status will be shown on the screen

An applicant can also check the TAN card status through SMS in a given way- 

“NSDLTAN <space> Acknowledgement No and send it to 57575”


What is the TAN application processing fee?
The TAN processing fee is Rs. 65 (Rs. 55 application charge + 18.00% Goods & Services Tax).
How can I make payment for the TAN application?
Payment can be made through- Demand Draft, Cheque, Debit Card/Credit Card/ Net Banking.
Who allots a TAN?
A TAN is allotted by the Income Tax Department of the country.
Can I apply for TAN online?
Yes, you can apply for a TAN card by visiting the official website of NSDL-TIN.
Can I quote a PAN in place of TAN?
Both PAN and TAN are different and thus, they cannot be quoted in place of each other.
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