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Outward Remittance – How can NRIs transfer funds Overseas from India?

How can NRIs transfer funds Overseas from India?

NRIs live abroad and earn money abroad but many of them have money in India through passive earning such as rent or through the sale of investments and property. It is possible for them to transfer these funds outside India provided they follow the regulations laid down by RBI.

How can NRIs transfer funds Overseas from India

Read – Gift by NRIs to Resident Indian & vice Versa

Repatriation or Outward Remittance

Sending money abroad is known as repatriation or outward remittance. It can be done through your banking channel only either using online services or via demand drafts or cheques. You cannot use the services of money transfer agents.

NRIs will not have a resident Indian bank account. So their earnings in India will be credited to the NRO account. NRIs who do not have plans to come to India for good in the near future will not have much use of the money lying idle int the NRO account.

To help them use it effectively, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) allows an amount up to USD 1 million per financial year from the NRO account to NRE account. The limit includes the payment of applicable taxes.

If an NRI sells a residential or commercial property, the amount that was brought in India to buy the property can be freely repatriated. The amount would have been brought in via an NRE account. It should be noted that proceeds of sale of only two properties can be repatriated.

If the NRI brings in money from abroad to repay the home loan amount taken to buy the property, the bank from which he took the loan will allow him to freely repatriate an equivalent amount to what was brought in the country from abroad.

There can be cases where the NRI has made an investment in India using funds that were brought in India from abroad and then sells it.  The sales proceeds of such investment can be repatriated freely after paying capital gains tax if applicable.

Interest earned and account balance in NRE and FCNR accounts can be freely repatriated abroad.

Rules For Transfer of Money –

An NRI has to follow certain rules to transfer his money from India to the foreign country where he is residing –

  • The NRI has to fill up and submit Form 15CA (online application form) and Form 15CB (Chartered Accountant Application) to the bank branch to transfer money from India to a foreign country.

The forms can be accessed here –

Form 15CA

Form 15CB  – Login to the portal and access the ‘forms’ section. This form is required only in certain conditions. For example, it is not required when the remittance is less than 50,000 in one transaction and less than 2,50,000 overall in one financial year

  • The exchange rates prevailing at the time of processing the repatriation request will be applicable.
  • It is important to give correct bank account details for the repatriation request as the bank in India might not be able to validate the details of a foreign bank account.
  • It will take two working days for the transfer to get completed.

Most banks in India allow NRIs to transfer funds from India to the country they are living in.

Outward Remittance

Check – Status of NRE FD after returning to India

Exceptions

Theoretically, there are many exceptions where you don’t require form 15ca & 15cb but my interaction with many NRIs & few CAs make me believe that bankers don’t want to take any risk when it comes to NRI issues. You can share your views in the comment section.

Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA)

If your remittances consist of interest from NRO deposit, the bank is required to deduct tax at source on the interest at the rate of 30%. Suppose you live in the US or UK or any other country that has a DTAA  with  India, then you are eligible for a reduced TDS rate of 15%.

The bank will require you to submit a Tax Residency Certificate from your country of residence if you want to avail of this reduced rate.

The basis of DTAA is that a particular income is taxed in both countries. There are scenarios of DTAAs that India has signed with countries that do not have personal tax. However, there are instances where a foreign country may not levy a personal tax on its residents, yet India has a DTAA with those countries that allow NRIs of those countries to avail a reduced rate of TDS.

In such cases, each bank might have its own way of handling this. Some banks like the State Bank of India require you to submit a declaration form if you reside in a country that has a zero tax but has a DTAA with India that offers a lower rate of TDS. On submitting this self-declaration, the bank will deduct tax at source at the reduced rate instead of the mandated 30%.

Also Read – NRI Joint Account with Resident Indian

Please share your experience regarding outward remittance. If you have any questions related to repatriation – feel free to add in the comment section. 

About the Author

Hemant Beniwal is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and his Company Ark Primary Advisors Pvt Ltd is registered as an Investment Adviser with SEBI. Hemant is also a member of the Financial Planning Association, U.S.A and registered as a life planner with Kinder Institute of Life Planning, U.S.A. He started his Financial Planning Practice in 2009 & is among the first generation of financial planners in India. He also authored Bestseller book "Financial Life Planning".

  • Annkit says:

    Are interest from NRE FDs taxable once the residence status changes to RNOR

  • Hayat Sajjad Ahmed says:

    Good information.

  • A L Chaudhary says:

    As per and CBDT Circulars and notifications Certificate 15 CA and bd 15 CB are not required of transfer from NRO to NRE and outward remitances covered under 33 exemptions. But in practice mostly bankl insist for these not required certificates. In a country like India even CA professional are not coming out and writing about correct rquirement.

  • Subhash says:

    My son has a NRO account. I am a MANDATE HOLDER. cAN i DEPOSIT MONEY IN HIS ACCOUNT & OPEN FD FOR ONE YEAR & TAKE INTEREST EARNED DURING THE YEAR IN INDIA

    • Anuj says:

      Hi. Subhash

      Yes, you can do that.

  • Jayashree says:

    If a recently acquired NRI Status person remain as resident Indian status for over a year what are the consequences?

  • Jayashree says:

    What are the consequences of a Senior citizen NRI whose only source of income is interest from FDs in banks in india maintaining resident Indian status for say 2 years and transferring funds to her daughter at regular intervals as a gift from her Indian savings account through bank transfer? For how long can an NRI maintain Indian resident status legally? Should she convert her bank account in India to NRI/NRO account immediately after becoming a NRI ? What are the consequences if she does not comply with it for the first 2 years? Can she receive funds in her US savings account as gift or maintenance from another NRI in US from his Indian savings account? Can she receive in her US savings account maintenance/gift monies from her daughter in the US who is of Indian origin and subsequently become an American citizen? What are the consequences if she, who is an NRI, files IT returns in India as resident Indian?

  • Mahinder says:

    I have returned to India. But plan to take up a job again later outside in another country. Can I continue to keep my foreign bank accounts?

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