Sunday, September 23, 2012

:: SCORES ::



How to Approach SEBI with your Complaint 

(The market regulator has initiated a centralized online system for lodging and tracking complaints. Here's how to redress your grievances.)

1. File the Complaint

For registering a complaint, access and click on the 'Complaint Registration' tab under 'Investor Corner'

2.  Enter your Details

(a) Enter your personal details and select a category among the following options
  • Listed companies/registrar & travel agents
  • Brokers/stock exchanges
  • Depository participants/depository
  • Mutual Funds
  • Other entities
  • Information to Sebi
(b) Enter specific details of the complaint in the specific category.

3. Supporting documents

Supporting documents up to 1 MB can be attached in the PDF format. In case the data to be loaded for each category is more than 1 MB, it can be sent by post to any of the Sebi offices.

4. Registration number


On filing the complaint, a unique registration number will be generated, which can be used for future correspondence. An e-mail acknowledging the complaint with the complaint registration number will also be sent to the e-mail ID entered in the complaint registration form.

Sending a reminder

If you want to send a reminder for the lodged complaint, click on 'Send Reminder' under 'Investor Corner' on the home page. Provide details like registration number, reminder details and the security code.

If you are not satisfied with the response

You can file a fresh complaint, send a mail to the officer entrusted with the complaint, take up the complaint with senior officers, or initiate legal proceedings against the entity.

Track your complaint

To check your complaint status, click on 'View Complaint Status' under 'Investor Corner' on the home page
  • Provide the complaint registration number which was allotted at the time of registration
  • Enter your password 
    • In case of online complaints, your e-mail address is your password.
    • In case of physical complaints, send to Sebi, enter the password send to you by Sebi in the acknowledgement letter.
  • On verifying the correctness of registration number, password and security code, the current status of your complaint is displayed.

How complaint is processed?

The complaint is scrutinized by Sebi  to see if the subject falls under its purview. If it does, Sebi forwards it to the concerned entity with an advice to send a written reply to the investors and file an action-taken report within 30 days.

Your complaint may not be taken up if

  • is incomplete or not specific
  • ...the allegation is not supported by documents
  • are simply offering suggestions or seeking guidance/explanation
  • want to seek explanation for non-trading or illiquidity of shares
  • are not satisfied with the trading price of shares
  • is about non-listing of shares of a private offer
  • concerns disputes arising from a private agreement with companies/intermediaries.

Points to Note

  1. A complaint that has been taken up with the company concerned can be registered on SCORES if the investor is not satisfied with the response.
  2. Unlisted companies and entities not registered with Sebi are not covered by SCORES.
  3. An investor, who is not familiar with SCORES or has no access to the website, can lodge a complaint in the physical form by mail to any Sebi office. Such complaints are scanned and uploaded in SCORES for processing.
  4. You can also call up Sebi's toll-free helpline service number for guidance
    • 1800 266 7575   OR

    • 1800 22 7575

          (The service is available in 14 languages)

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Investment Tax

How are your investments taxed

All financial instruments go through three stages -- Investment, Earning and Withdrawal. Since the tax rules vary across these phases, find  out how much tax you will have to pay on your investment.
  • PF & VPF  - This is the most common investment. The interest rates are decided by EPFO Trust. 
  • PPF - This assured return scheme is market linked, with 1 lakh annual investment limit. 
  • Insurance Policies - Budget 2012 says that for tax benefits, the cover should be 10 times the annual premium. 
  • ELSS funds - TAx-saver with the shortest lock-in period of three years may get scrapped under the DTC.
The Exempt-Exempt-Exempt model means all three stages are tax-free. You get tax deduction at the time of investment, the earnings are tax-free, as are the withdrawals.
  • Unit linked pension plans - Upto 33% of the pension corpus withdrawn on maturity is tax-free. Rest to be put in annuity. 
  • Pension policies - Annuity income is taxable as income at the normal rate applicable to the investor. 
  • NPS - Launched with much fanfare, it has not done too well. May be overhauled and improved soon.
The Exempt-Exempt-Tax regime gives tax deduction at the time of investment and the earning is tax-free, but withdrawal is taxed as income at marginal rate.
  • NSCs - These are now market linked like the PPF and available in 5 and 10 years options.
  • Tax-savings FDs - Best tax saving option for risk averse investors. Higher rates for senior citizens.
  • Senior Citizens Savings Scheme - A popular option that is market-linked, and has an investment limit of 15 lakh per person
The Exempt-Tax-Exempt arrangement offers tax deduction to investment but earning is taxed. The withdrawal is tax-free given the tax is paid out at the growth stage.
  • Stocks - If held for more than a year, no tax on capital gains. You pay 15% tax if sold before a year.
  • Equity funds - Just like stocks, there is no tax if held for more than a year. All dividends are tax-free
  • Balanced funds - Though up to 40% of portfolio can be in debt, these enjoy the same tax benefits as equity funds
  • Tax-free bonds - These bonds issued by infrastructure companies carries a low coupon rate 

No tax deduction here for the investor. He invests post-tax income but the earning and withdrawal are tax-free if the investment is held for at least one year.

  • Non Equity hybrid fund - After a year, profit from sale is taxed at a lower rate of flat 10% or 20% after indexation.
  • Debt funds -Tax-efficient way of investing in debt. After a year, profits are treated as capital gains.
  • FMPs - Similar to FDs, but profits are taxed at a lower rate. Very popular among HNIs
Here again, the investor puts in post-tax income. While there is no tax during the growth stage, the earning is taxed at the time of withdrawal.
  • Recurring deposits - Lock into high rates even if you don't have a lump sum. No TDS, so must pay tax yourself.
  • Post office MIS - Monthly income is fully taxable without any TDS. Onus is on the investor to pay tax.
  • Fixed deposits - TDS only up to 10% if interest is more than 10,000 a year. Here, too onus is on investor.
  • Bonds - Income from tax-saving bonds is taxable. Pay tax if you fall in the higher tax bracket
This is possibly the least tax-efficient regime with no tax deduction offered and earning fully taxable. With income taxed every year, there is no tax on principal at maturity.