First-Time Tax Return: 5 Crucial Steps for a Smooth Filing Experience

Filing your tax return for the first time can be daunting, but understanding the key steps can make it much easier. Here are five crucial things to remember:

1. Verify your NTN registration and date:

  • Check your NTN registration date: This is usually created when you get a job or register for tax purposes. Visit the FBR website and enter your CNIC number to find your registration date.
  • Know how many returns you need to file: If you’re late, calculate how many previous years’ returns you need to file (e.g., if registered three years ago and received a notice in 2023, file for 2021 and 2022 as well).

2. Gather accurate data:

  • Track your closing and opening balances: Ensure your closing balance in 2022 matches the opening balance in 2023 to avoid future discrepancies.
  • Collect financial information: Gather details like income, bank statements, asset purchases (property, cars, gold), and any transfer fees related to these assets.

3. Verify your MIS data:

  • Review your tax payments : Check the FBR website or mobile app to ensure all details match your records.
  • Cross-check asset information: Verify that your asset details on the tax portal are accurate and complete.

4. Report asset details accurately:

  • Declare assets at purchase value: If you paid for an asset at a specific value, report that value instead of zero, even for inherited property.
  • Report transfer fees if applicable: Include any fees paid during asset transfers.
  • Use “zero report” option carefully: Only use zero value if you genuinely don’t have any data.

5. Understand gold reporting and capital gain tax:

  • Don’t undervalue gold: Report gold at its market value to avoid paying higher capital gain tax later.
  • Mention purchase date and value: Report the date and value of purchase to accurately calculate capital gain.


  • Taking time to file accurately reduces future complications and minimizes your tax burden.
  • Consult a tax professional for personalized guidance if needed.

By following these steps and utilizing the available resources, you can ensure a smooth and successful first-time tax return filing experience.

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