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Electronic Filing of Profits Tax Return

A further extension of 2 WEEKS will be granted by the Department on application if the Profits Tax Returns are filed electronically.

Guide to Electronic Filing of Profits Tax Return

Corporations and partnerships satisfying the conditions specified by the Commissioner of Inland Revenue can file their Profits Tax Returns for any year of assessment from 2015/16 to 2020/21 and attach supplementary forms to Profits Tax Return S1, S2, S3 and S4 electronically under eTAX.

This Guide states the conditions that a corporation and a partnership must satisfy in order to use the Internet filing service and introduces the service for filing of Profits Tax Return through the Internet.


The Conditions that a Corporation and a Partnership must satisfy in order to use the Internet Filing Service

A corporation must satisfy the following conditions in the relevant year:

  • Its gross income for the basis period does not exceed HK$2,000,000;
  • It has not paid or accrued to a non-resident person any sum for the use of intellectual property specified in section 15(1)(a), (b) or (ba) of the IRO or for the assignment of performer's right in section 15(1)(bb) of the IRO;
  • It does not have any deemed assessable profits pursuant to section 20AE, 20AF, 20AX and/or 20AY of the Inland Revenue Ordinance ("IRO");
  • It is not a ship-owner;
  • Its Assessable Profits / Adjusted Loss do not include any interest, profits/loss arising from "short / medium term debt instruments" (issued before 1 April 2018) as defined in section 14A(4) of the IRO, any profits / loss of a professional reinsurer, an authorized captive insurer, a specified insurer or a licensed insurance broker company as defined in section 14AB of the IRO, any qualifying profits / loss of a qualifying corporate treasury centre as defined in section 14C of the IRO, any qualifying profits / loss of a qualifying aircraft lessor or a qualifying aircraft leasing manager as defined in section 14G of the IRO, or any qualifying profits / loss of a qualifying ship lessor or a qualifying ship leasing manager as defined in section 14O of the IRO;
  • It does not claim any tax relief pursuant to an arrangement for avoidance of double taxation specified under section 49(1) or 49(1A) of the IRO;
  • It has not obtained an advance ruling on any of its tax matter in relation to that year of assessment;
  • It does not claim debt treatment for an arrangement as "an originator" or "a bond-issuer" of a specified alternative bond scheme under section 40AB of and Schedule 17A to the IRO;
  • It does not claim deduction for distribution arising from a regulatory capital security; and
  • It is not a permanent establishment in Hong Kong of a non-Hong Kong resident person.

A partnership must satisfy the conditions above. In addition,

  • It cannot have more than 6 partners during the basis period for that year of assessment (including those partners who have retired); and
  • All of its partners are individuals.

If the corporation/partnership does not satisfy any one of the above conditions, it cannot use the Internet filing service. Please file both the return and all required supplementary forms in paper form.

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Flow of Submitting Profits Tax Return through the Internet

  • If you are required to submit supplementary form(s) S1, S2, S3 and S4, you should begin with downloading fillable PDF form(s) for the required supplementary form(s).  Then, fill in the form(s) and export XML data file(s).  Zip all XML data file(s) into one file and upload the Zip file via the "Uploading of Data Files for Supplementary Form to Profits Tax Return" service.  You are advised to save or print the Acknowledgement after successful uploading for record and reference.  After that, complete the Profits Tax Return using the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service and then submit through the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service.
  • If you are NOT required to submit any supplementary form, you can access the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service directly for completion of the Profits Tax Return, followed by submission through the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service.

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Services for Filing of Profits Tax Return through the Internet

eTAX provides the following four services relating to the Internet filing of Profits Tax Return:

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Key points for using the "Uploading of Data Files for Supplementary Form to Profits Tax Return" service

Any person appointed by the corporation/business can use the "Uploading of Data Files for Supplementary Form to Profits Tax Return" service to upload supplementary forms S1, S2, S3 and S4 for the corporation/business, irrespective of whether he has an eTAX Account or not.

The supplementary form(s) must have been prepared using the latest version of supplementary form(s) in fillable PDF format and exported data file(s) in XML format before using this service.

To use the service, go to eTAX www.gov.hk/etax and select the "Uploading of Data Files for Supplementary Form to Profits Tax Return" service from the menu of "Services Available under eTAX". Then, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Read Important Notes
Step 2: Enter File No. and Return Identification No. (RIN)
Step 3: Select Action
Step 4: Zip XML File(s) or Upload / Delete Zip File
Step 5: Acknowledgement (for Upload / Delete Action)

Notes:

  • A company will have a different "Return Identification Number (RIN)" for the return of each year of assessment. Therefore, the "Return Identification Number (RIN)" printed on the return of the relevant year of assessment must be used when using the Internet filing service. If no "Return Identification Number (RIN)" is printed on the return, both the return and all required supplementary forms cannot be filed through the Internet and have to be filed in paper form.
  • If you are required to submit supplementary forms other than S1, S2, S3 and S4, please file the return and ALL required supplementary form(s) in paper form.
  • File to be uploaded must be zipped by the zip function of this service.
  • After uploading a Zip file, in case you are required to upload additional supplementary form(s) or amend/remove the supplementary form(s) embedded in the Zip file already uploaded, full set of supplementary form(s) (includes form(s) without amendment) must be zipped into a new Zip file and uploaded again to replace the previous Zip file.

If you wish to know more about the "Uploading of Data Files for Supplementary Form to Profits Tax Return" service, please click here to view Online Demo.

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Key points for using the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service

Any person appointed by the corporation/business can use the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service to prepare the Profits Tax Return of the corporation/business, irrespective of whether he has an eTAX Account or not.

Please get ready the Profits Tax Return and the supporting documents referred to in the notice on page 1 of the Profits Tax Return before using this service.

To use the service, go to eTAX www.gov.hk/etax and select the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service from the menu of "Services Available under eTAX". Then, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Read Important Notes
Step 2: Enter File No. and Return Identification No. (RIN)
Step 3: Complete Return
Step 4: Add Notes to Filer
Step 5: Save Draft Return for Submission

Notes:

  • A company will have a different "Return Identification Number (RIN)" for the return of each year of assessment. Therefore, the "Return Identification Number (RIN)" printed on the return of the relevant year of assessment must be used when using the Internet filing service. If no "Return Identification Number (RIN)" is printed on the return, both the return and all required supplementary forms cannot be filed through the Internet and have to be filed in paper form.
  • If you need to leave this service before you have finished "Step 3: Complete Return" and "Step 4: Add Notes to Filer", you can download and save the input data to computer or other storage device by clicking on the [Save] button at the bottom of any page of "Step 3" or "Step 4". You can return to this service to retrieve the information saved and continue to complete the return later.
  • After you have checked that the information shown on the draft return in "Step 5: Save Draft Return for Submission" is in order, please click on the [Save for Submission] button at the bottom to store the draft return in computer or other storage device for submission later. The person who is responsible for submitting the return can then use the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service to retrieve the draft return file for verification, signing and submission of the Profits Tax Return.

If you wish to know more about the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service, please click here to view Online Demo.

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Key points for using the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service

Only an eTAX Account holder in the following capacity can use the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service to sign and submit Profits Tax Return that meets the criteria for Internet filing:
 

  • the Director, Secretary, Manager or Investment Manager (only applicable to a corporation that is an open-ended fund company) of the corporation;
  • the precedent partner of the partnership; or
  • the sole proprietor of the business (only if it was changed from a partnership to a sole proprietorship during the basis period for the year of assessment).

To open an eTAX Account, please click Apply for eTAX Password.

The draft return must have been prepared using the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service before the return filer uses this service to submit the return.

To use the service, the return filer should go to eTAX www.gov.hk/etax and select the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service from the menu of "Services Available under eTAX". Then, log on to his eTAX Account and follow the steps below:

Step 1: Read Important Notes
Step 2: Open Draft Return
Step 3: Read Notes by Preparer
Step 4: Select Designation of Filer
Step 5: Sign and Submit
Step 6: Acknowledgement

Notes:

  • If any error or omission is found on the information in the simulated return displayed in "Step 5", please click on the [Amend] button at the bottom of the simulated return to go to the "Completion of Profits Tax Return" service to correct the return information.
  • The return filer will need to use his eTAX Password, MyGovHK Password, recognized personal digital certificate or "iAM Smart" account with digital signing function to sign the return.
  • For the purpose of filing tax returns under the Inland Revenue Ordinance, either digital signature or password is accepted as an alternative to hand-written signature. A person who files Profits Tax Return by using his/her password will be treated as having signed the return and is accountable for the accuracy of the information submitted.
  • If any error is discovered after submission of the return, please give a duly signed written notice to the Commissioner of Inland Revenue with particulars including your name, capacity, name of the corporation/business, file number, the relevant year of assessment and details of the amendment or supplement. Please do not use a paper Profits Tax Return for this purpose.

If you wish to know more about the "Submission of Profits Tax Return" service, please click here to view Online Demo.

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Key points for using the "Viewing of Profits Tax Return" service

Only the return filer can access this service.

The return filer can use this service to view, save and print the Profits Tax Return as soon as he has submitted it through the Internet. The time limit is 1 month from the date of submission. The return filer is advised to print a copy or save it for record purposes. A return that is saved in computer or other storage device can be viewed after connecting the computer to the Internet.

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Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

  • Click here to read the frequently asked questions and answers about filing of Profits Tax Return through the Internet.