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Can you declare your SIP investments under Section 80C of the income tax act?

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A common question among investors is whether Systematic Investment Plans (SIPs) in mutual funds qualify for tax benefits. It’s not SIPs that offer tax benefits, but investments made in an equity-linked savings scheme or ELSS mutual fund – whether through SIPs or via lumpsum – that are eligible for tax benefits under Section 80C of the old income tax regime.

  • Table of contents
  1. What is Section 80C?
  2. Do SIP investments in mutual funds qualify for section 80C benefit?
  3. How can you save taxes with mutual funds?

What is Section 80C?

Under the old regime, taxpayers can claim an annual deduction of up to Rs 1.5 lakh on their taxable income for certain investments and expenditures. A majority of these exemptions fall under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act. These include:

  • Equity linked savings schemes (ELSS)
  • Public provident fund (PPF)
  • National savings certificate (NSC)
  • Life insurance premiums
  • Home loan principal repayments
  • Tuition fees for children
  • Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana

The amount invested under Section 80C reduces the taxable income, thereby reducing the tax liability. The maximum deduction limit across all investments under Section 80C is Rs 1.5 lakh.

Do SIP investments in mutual funds qualify for section 80C benefit?

Investments made through SIPs in ELSS are eligible for Section 80C benefit. ELSS is a mutual fund that invests 80% of its portfolio in equity and equity-related instruments. It has a minimum lock-in period of three years.

However, SIP investments in other types of mutual funds like large cap funds, multi cap funds, debt funds etc. do not qualify for Section 80C benefits.

How can you save taxes with mutual funds?

ELSS investments are an effective way to save tax under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act. The lock-in period for such investments is relatively low (three years), which also makes them suitable for medium-term goal planning.

Here are a few steps to save tax through ELSS SIP investments under Section 80C:

  1. Choose an ELSS scheme: Select a scheme from a reputed fund house. Evaluate past returns (if available), fund manager’s experience, expense ratio, portfolio holdings etc. before selecting the scheme. Do note that past performance may not sustain in the future.
  2. Start an SIP: Initiate an SIP in the chosen scheme for the desired amount.
  3. Invest before March: Make sure your SIP instalments are scheduled such that the total invested amount reaches Rs 1.5 lakh (across ELSS and other avenues, if any) before March 31 of the ongoing financial year.
  4. Mention in tax returns: When filing income tax returns, mention the ELSS investment amount under Section 80C deductions to reduce taxable income.


Section 80C of the Income Tax Act provides a deduction up to Rs. 1.5 lakh for investments in select schemes. These include Equity Linked Savings Schemes (ELSS), which are equity-oriented mutual funds. SIPs in ELSS mutual funds qualify for this tax benefit, while those in other mutual funds do not. A total of Rs 1.5 lakh is deducted from your taxable income for investments done under Section 80C, which can result in significant tax relief.


What is the lock-in period for ELSS investments?
ELSS investments have a lock-in period of 3 years. Investors cannot redeem their units before that.

How is ELSS different from other mutual funds?
ELSS provides tax benefit under Section 80C while other funds do not. ELSS also has the relatively short lock-in period of 3 years compared to other tax saving instruments like NSC, PPF etc.

Do I need to submit any proof for claiming SIP tax deduction?
Yes, you need to submit an account statement or investment certificate to show proof of investment and claim tax benefits under Section 80C.

Mutual Fund investments are subject to market risks, read all scheme related documents carefully.
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