Nov 282012

Leave Travel Allowance


Que.: What is an LTA?

Ans.:- An LTA is the remuneration paid by an employer for Employee’s travel in the country, when he is on leave with the family or alone. LTA amount is tax free.

Que.: Who can claim for an LTA?

Ans.: If an employee is able to furnish the documents as a proof of travel, he can claim the expense of travel in the same year. The total cost of the holidays is not covered, only the travelling cost is covered.

Que.: What documents does an employee need to present to claim for an LTA?

Ans.: An employee must maintain proof of whichever means he has travelled by and wherever he has travelled in the country. The proof is inclusive of tickets, travel agent’s invoice or boarding passes as a proof against his travel which actually help during tax claims. These documents concerning with travelling indicate that an employee has travelled by a particular means of transportation.

Que.: How many members can an employee claim for LTA?

Ans.: Employee and his family. An Employee’s family is inclusive of his siblings and parents who are dependent on him, spouse & up to two children. If your family is travelling without you, an LTA cannot be claimed, so for claiming LTA either an employee  has to travel alone, or if his family is travelling, you have to be with them.

Que.: How can an employee get an LTA?

Ans.: An Employee is able to receive leave travel allowance if he has applied for leave from his company and has actually travelled.

Que.: How often can an employee travel using an LTA?

Ans.: The government fixes blocks of years. The current block is January 2010 to December 2013. The previous block is  January 2006 to December 2009.

Que.: In what circumstances LTA is tax exempted?

Ans.: An LTA is tax exempted in case he or she travels by taking a shortest route. Travelling can be by economy class air fare,  first class rail ticket or first class bus fare.  If you cannot get a public transport and take a private like rent  a car, get a bill issued by such rental company and can claim expenses equal to first class train fare.

Que.: Can the entire amount of travelling cost be claimed?

Ans.: Yes, the entire amount of  travelling cost can be claimed.

Que.: Can both husband and working spouse claim for LTA?

Ans.:  No,  LTA cannot be claimed twice for the same journey.

Que.: Can LTA be brought forward?

Ans.: Yes, if an Employee does not avail LTA during the block of 4 years, he can utilize the pending LTA in the first year of the subsequent block and thus can travel more three times in the same block of years.

Que.: How can Leave Travel Allowance be calculated?

Ans.: An employee and his wife are Employees having LTA Rs 20,000/- each as part of the salaries. He travelled with his wife and a child and the travel cost comes to Rs. 15,000/- which is claimable amount for tax deduction but the remaining Rs 5000/- is taxable. At the same time,  his spouse cannot claim for tax deduction since at one time only one employer can defray the cost of travel. Only one person from a couple is able to receive benefits of LTA at one time. But if the spouse wants to claim her LTA for another travel she can claim LTA.