How Overseas Pakistanis can become tax filer?

How Overseas Pakistanis can become filer

Many Pakistani National living in foreign countries may have a question arising in their mind that how overseas Pakistanis can become filer. You can find your answer here:

Do Overseas Pakistanis Have to File Taxes?

Yes, overseas Pakistanis can become filer and every foreign Pakistani has to pay their taxes based on their income in Pakistan. Like many other countries, taxation in Pakistan depends on the individual’s resident status other than the foreign country in which he/she resides. Previously, if someone was held for 183 days (or more) during the tax year, it was assumed that the tax resident would end July 1 to June 30. However, this period has been reduced to four months following the 2019 financial law. This means that for the year 2019-20, a person must remain in a foreign country for at least eight months to claim tax-free status. In addition, Pakistan residents should be aware that their income is taxed. Meanwhile, after filing tax returns for foreign Pakistanis, it is necessary to file an income tax return on income from Pakistan. Non-resident Pakistanis are not obligated to file a declaration of wealth. Foreign Pakistanis file tax returns if the Pakistan-based income is below the legal income tax threshold or in any case. If they need a valid CNIC, they file tax returns to trigger the filer benefits.

How Can Overseas Pakistanis File Tax Returns in Pakistan?

First of all, foreign Pakistanis must get NTN (National Tax Number) and it can be obtained by registering on FBR’s online portal.

You should first check the FBR filer status.

How to Check Your FBR Filer Status and NTN?

You can check the taxpayer status and the NTN using the following two methods:

  1. Type ATL [space] CNIC in a message and send this message to 9966. Please note that do not add any dash, any character or extra space between the numbers because it will not be sent. In a few minutes, you will receive a text message of your taxpayer status. For this purpose, you will need a Pakistani SIM card.
  2. Visit the official FBR website and go for search taxpayers in the navigation panel that shows up on the website. At the top-down menu, select Active Taxpayer (IT). Then you will be asked to type your CNIC and the verification code received in the text message. After entering the CNIC and the verification code, click on Verify and you will immediately know whether your name exists in the ATL (Active Taxpayer List) or not.

If your name is available on ATL but you don’t know the NTN number, click on the online NTN / STRN Inquiry link and get your NTN number. Meanwhile, if anyone has an NTN and no Iris login credentials, log in details can be obtained by clicking on the ‘E-Enrolment for Registered Person’.

Registration for NTN

Foreign Pakistanis, who have not filed their taxes before, are required to register themself on FBR by visiting FBR and click on the registration number. They should fill in the required details to enter the iris system.

The person who is applying for NTN should verify himself with the code sent via mobile phone or email. The person is required to verify himself as soon as possible as verification code works for a few minutes after sent to you.

After completing the ‘Registration Form’, submit it to get your NTN number.

For more information, check out our comprehensive blog ‘How to become Filer’.

Filing Tax Return for Overseas Pakistanis

First of all, log in to IRIS and then click the ‘Declaration’ menu available above. Follow the procedure described and be sure while stating your income from foreign sources in the ‘Other Sources’ section of the website.

Moreover, depending upon the months you spent in Pakistan during the financial year. Depending, choose your status as ‘resident’ or ‘non-resident’ in the ‘Active’ section and enter the required information in the input field.

How to become a Filer in Pakistan?

how to become filer

If you are the citizen of Pakistan, it is your duty to pay your tax. To become a filer in Pakistan, you must have a sim card registered with your own Cnic number, your personal email address, pdf file of Certificate of maintenance of your personal bank account, Evidence of Tenancy/Ownership of business premises in case if you own any business and paid utility bill of business premises which may not be older than 3 months.

Now you must follow these procedures:

  • Obtain an NTN Number (National Tax Number) as this number is required to become a filer in Pakistan.
  • NTN number can be obtained by visiting FBR website and then register yourself by clicking Registration for Unregistered Person tab. Fill the form as it is a simple form. After filling it, it will generate your NTN number.
  • NTN number takes a few hours and you will get a unique NTN number at your disposal but now the government is working on converting your National CNIC as your NTN number.

After getting your NTN number, you will have to submit your tax to become a filer. For this purpose you will have to follow these steps:

  • Once you submit all the details, IRIS will confirm that you have now submitted it.
  • After successful submission, you will receive a confirmation email. Later you will be active on the ATL listing.
  • You can also check it by typing 13 digit CNIC number and sms to 9966 to check whether you are on ATL list or not.


How to check FBR filer status in Pakistan?

fbr filer status

You can check your your Active Fbr Filer Status or Active Taxpayer Status through online and manually through SMS service.

Check ATL Status through Online Method:

For online status check, you can check your FBR filer status by simply going to Online Active Taxpayer Status and follow the steps:

Step 1: Under Parameter type select NTN if taxpayer is Business or AOP. If taxpayer is individual you will have to select CNIC option. Enter Cnic no or NTN in Registration No. field according to parameter selected. (The value must be added without hyphen).

ATL Status – Step 1

Step 2: Under Date field, you can select any previous date to check your ATL status for desired date.

ATL Status – Step 2

Step 3: Enter captcha code under Enter code field.

ATL Status – Step 3

After providing all details, click on the Verify button to see the results. After successful verification, result will be displayed on your screen.

Check ATL Status through SMS

In order to check you ATL status, you will have to perform the following simple steps:

  • For individual: Type in message on your phone “ATL (space) 13 digits Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC)” and send to 9966.
  • For Company or AOP: Type “ATL (space) 7 digits National Tax Number (NTN)” and send to 9966.

Check AJ&K Active Taxpayer status by SMS through the following procedure:

  • For any Individual person, you need to type AJKATL (space) CNIC and send it to 9966. The CNIC number shouldn’t have spaced inserted.
  • The person having should type NTN AJKATL (space) 11 digit NTN number and send it to 9966. Also, NTN number shouldn’t have any space inserted between digits.

Check ATL Status by downloading ATL list:

For updated, active taxpayer list please click on the link given:

Active Taxpayer List (Income Tax)

Who is filer and non-filer in Pakistan?

Who is filer and non-filer in Pakistan?

FBR has introduced a holding tax for non-filers to double rates as compared to filers withholding tax under the Income Tax Ordinance 2001 to differentiate between filer and non-filer in Pakistan.


A person who owns “Taxpayers Card” also with his name appearing on the “Active Tax Payer” list issued by the Federal Board of Revenue is known as “Filer“.


A person who is not registered with (FBR) as an active taxpayer and does not files income tax returns annually is known as “Non-Filer”.

Purpose of Differentiating between Filer and Non-Filer:

The basic purpose of differentiating filer and non-filer in Pakistan categories is to Increase the tax base and also to punish those who do not file their tax returns, the Finance Act 2014 imposed higher taxes for non-filer. The tax of non-filers is being tightened every year to force them to become filers.

Benefits of Filer:

  • Filers have to pay less with-holding tax.
  • No restrictions on filers from purchasing or importing motor vehicles.
  • Filers can purchase any property without any restrictions.
  • Filers have to pay fewer tax rates on prize bonds.
  • Filer pays a 15% tax on their dividends.

Disadvantages of Non-Filer:

  • Ban on non-filers from purchasing or importing motor vehicles according to The Finance Bill – 2018 and local carmakers have already implemented and notified it.
  • Ban on non-filers from purchasing a property worth more than Rs one lakh. 4 million.
  • Non-Filers have to pay higher withholding taxes.
  • Non-Filer has to pay higher tax rates on prize bonds.
  • Non-Filer pays 20 percent tax on their dividends.
  • Higher rates on the registration of vehicles and taxes on tokens.

Nowadays, with the advent of information technology (IT) facilities, becoming a filer is not so difficult. The FBR has introduced a number of facilities in this regard which help people to easily become filers and file their tax returns. A person has to register a National Tax Number (NTN) before filing a tax return or registering for an ATL. You can register for NTN by visiting “” without visiting the tax office.

How to check NTN number in Pakistan?

check ntn number

NTN stands for National Tax Number. Hence, in order to check your NTN number, you will have to follow these steps.

  • To check NTN number in Pakistan, click on the “Online NTN/STRN Inquiry” option from the left sidebar.
  • Step 1: Here you will see the new page where you will have to select your relevant option from the drop-down under Parameter type. In order to check your NTN number select the NTN option.
  • Step 2: In the next step, you will have to enter your personal Cnic number under Registration No field.
  • Step 3: Provide captcha code (eg. TfqBMo given in snapshot) against the “Enter code” field.
  • After providing information click the “Verify” button.
  • If the information is valid it shows the results while on the other hand, it shows error/ invalid information/ no record found.

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