27th GST Council Meeting Updates – Returns Simplified

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On the 4th of May, 2018, the 27th GST Council meeting got underway, giving shape to the new returns filing model, which was awaited for the past several months. The new model was decided, based on the recommendations of the Group of Ministers, which had been constituted for the purpose of making the process a simplified one on the 17th of April, 2018. In addition the GST Council also did announce a few rate changes, and some structural changes in the shareholding pattern of the GSTN.Let’s go through all the major 27th GST Council meeting highlights:

27th GST Council meeting – Simplified returns

The 27th GST Council meeting introduced a simplified return filing process, major features of which are as follows:

One monthly return

All taxpayers, with a few exceptions, will have the facility to file one monthly returns, and the return filing dates will be determined in a staggered order, based on the turnover of the registered person. This has been primarily done to manage the load on the GST portal. Composition dealers and dealers with nil transactions will continue to file quarterly returns, as per the 27th GST Council meeting highlights.

Unidirectional flow of bills

There shall be a unidirectional flow of bills, i.e. bills may be uploaded by the seller anytime during the month, which will serve as valid documents to avail input tax credit for the buyer. The buyer too, will be able to see the uploaded invoices on a continuous basis, during a particular month. There will be no need to upload any purchase invoices as per the model suggested initially. Also, for all B2B transactions, HSN codes of 4 digits or more will need to be specified to achieve uniformity in the reporting system, as per the 27th GST Council highlights.

Simpler returns design

B2B dealers will need to fill invoice wise details of all outward supplies made by them, based on which the system will automatically calculate their tax liability. Similarly, their input tax credit will be calculated automatically by the system based on the invoices uploaded by their sellers. All this will be supported by a user-friendly interface coupled with an offline tool to upload invoices. Another major aspect of simplifying the returns process introduced by the 27th GST Council meeting was, the reduction in the content or the information required to be filled in the return forms. The details of the design of the return form, business processes and legal changes will be worked out by the appointed law committee based on these principles, as per the 27th GST Council updates.

No automatic reversal of ITC

There shall not be any automatic reversal of input tax credit from the buyer, in case the seller does not pay the tax, as was the case earlier. In case the seller defaults on the payment of tax, the recovery shall be made from the seller itself. However, as per the 27thGST Council recommendations, the option of reversal of ITC from the buyer shall also be an option available to the GST authorities, to address exceptional scenarios, such as, missing dealers, closure of business by the supplier, supplier not having adequate assets etc.

Online process for recovery and reversal

The recovery of tax or reversal of ITC shall be done through an online and automated process to reduce the human interface. The process will continue to follow the due course of issuing a notice and order, as per the updates from 27th GST Council meeting.

Supplier side control

In case a supplier has defaulted in payment of tax above a threshold amount, such a supplier will not be allowed to upload invoices and thus will not be allowed to avail any ITC. This has been introduced to avoid and to control misuse of the ITC facility. Similar safeguarding provisions have now been built in for newly registered dealers as well as per the 27th GST Council meeting updates. The GST Council has proposed setting up analytical tools to identify such transactions at the earliest, so that loss in revenue may be prevented.

Three stage transition

The following 3 stage transition to the new returns filing system was decided upon at the 27th GST Council meet:

  • Stage 1 – Present system of filing GSTR 3B and GSTR 1 returns. GSTR 2 and GSTR 3 will remain suspended. This will continue for a maximum of 6 months, by which the new return filing software will be ready.
  • Stage 2 – New return system will go live, with the facility for invoice – wise data upload and also facility for claiming ITC on a self-declaration basis, similar to the role of GSTR 3B currently. During this stage, the dealer will be constantly fed with information about the existing gap between ITC available, and provisional ITC being claimed.
  • Stage 3 – Provisional credit will get withdrawn totally, and ITC will be limited only to the invoices uploaded by the sellers from whom the dealer has purchased goods.

GST Rates discussed at the 27th GST Council meeting

While there were no GST rate changes announced as such at the 27th GST Council meeting, there was a good deal of discussion on the following two aspects:

  • Reduction of GST rates for digital transactions – Keeping in mind the need to move towards a less cash economy, the GST Council discussed a proposal to have a concession of 2% in the GST rate i.e. 1% each for CGST and SGST, for all B2C supplies in which payments are done via cheque or via digital mode. This was proposed in all cases where the overall GST rate is more than 3%, with a ceiling of INR 100 per transaction. The GST Council has recommended to set up a Group of Ministers from the State Governments to look into the proposal and make recommendations, before the next GST Council meeting, as suggested by the 27th GST Council meeting news.
  • Sugar Cess over and above 5% GST and reduction in GST rates of ethanol – Keeping in mind, the record production of sugar in the current sugar season, and the consequent reduction in sugar prices, the GST Council discussed imposing a sugar cess over and above the stipulated 5% GST rate and also considered reducing the GST rate on ethanol. The proposal has come from the food ministry, which has been mulling cutting down the GST rates on ethanol to help sugar mills clear dues worth INR 19,000 crore to sugarcane farmers. However, a conclusion could not be reached, and the GST Council finally recommended to set up a Group of Ministers from the State Governments to look into the proposal and make recommendations, within a period of 2 weeks, as per the 27th GST Council news.

GSTN changes finalised at the 27th GST Council meeting

The GSTN, as one may be aware, was created as a private limited, non-profit company, with an objective to provide shared IT infrastructure and services to Centre and State governments, tax payers and other stakeholders for the implementation of GST. Currently, the Central government and State governments are holding 24.5% equity shares respectively and the remaining 51% are held by 5 non-governmental institutions namely – HDFC, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, NSE Strategic Investment Co and LIC Housing Finance Ltd. Majority of the GST processes including registration, return filing, tax payment, refunds processing are largely IT driven, and thus it was a given that the GSTN was handling large scale invoice level data of lakhs of business entities.

Considering the nature of the functions handled by GSTN, the GST Council felt that the GSTN should be converted into a fully owned government company.

Keeping this in mind, it was decided at the 27th GST Council meeting, that the 51% held by the non-governmental institutions, worth INR 5.1 Crore, was decided to be distributed equally among the Centre and the State governments, thus taking the respective share of both bodies to 50% each. It was also decided that the GSTN board will be allowed to retain the existing staff at the existing terms and conditions for a period of up to 5 years, and shall also have the flexibility to hire people through contract on the terms and conditions similar to those used by GSTN till now, while hiring regular employees. Nevertheless, the existing financial commitments given by the Centre and the States to GSTN to share the capital costs and O&M costs of the IT systems will continue as before.

In short, the 27th GST Council meeting was a major game changer, as far as the simplified return filing process is concerned. Given the various initiatives discussed, proposed and finalised at the meeting, life for the business is surely bound to become simpler as far as GST compliance is concerned.

GST Appeals and Revisions

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In our previous blogs, we have taken you through the various provisions which cover the various provisions pertaining to demand, recovery and liability, when it comes to paying the unpaid tax, interest or penalty. However, any taxable person who is incorrectly facing any kind of a penalty, has an opportunity to appeal to a higher court in order to reversal the order given by a lower court, as per the GST law. If the appeal is successful, the relevant revisions are done.

In this series of blogs, we will study in detail about the various provisions related to GST appeals and revisions.

Appeals under GST – when are they invoked?

The GST law pertaining to GST appeals and revisions, primarily imposes two types of obligations – tax-related and procedure related. The taxpayers’ compliance with these obligations is verified by the proper tax officer, via audits, examinations etc. In certain cases, there are situations of actual or perceived non-compliance, which obviously leads to difference in opinion. If the difference persists, it results in a dispute, which then needs to be resolved.

To begin with, the dispute is initially resolved by a departmental officer resulting in the issue of an initial order. The order or decision is first passed by the Adjudicating Authority under GST, an entity which is considered competent to pass any order or decision under the GST Act, but does not include the Board, First Appellate Authority and the Appellate Tribunal.

However, if a taxable person is not satisfied by the decision or order passed by the Adjudicating Authority, then he can appeal to a higher court. The appeal, as discussed above will be an application to a higher court to reverse the decision of a lower court.

The following are the 4 levels of the appeal procedure in GST, as per the provisions for appeal and revision in GST:

Appeal Level Orders Passed By Can Appeal To
1st Adjudicating Authority First Appellate Authority
2nd First Appellate Authority Appellate Tribunal
3rd Appellate Tribunal High Court
4th High Court Supreme Court

Now, since India follows a dual GST structure, a natural question which arises is – should an appeal need to be made to both CGST as well as SGST / UTGST authorities. As per the provisions of GST appeals and revisions, both CGST as well as SGST / UTGST officers are empowered to pass orders, and an order passed under CGST will also be deemed to be applied to SGST / UTGST. However if an officer under CGST has passed any order, any GST appeal and revisions against that order, will lie only with the officers of CGST. The same will apply in the case or orders passed under SGST / UTGST.

Fees for filing GST appeals process

All appeals must be made by filling the prescribed GST appeal formats and by paying the required fees. The fee will be the full amount of tax, interest, fine, fee and penalty arising from the challenged order and a sum equal to 10% of the remaining amount of tax in dispute arising from the order, for which an appeal has been filed.

In cases, where an officer or the Commissioner is appealing, fees will not be applicable.

GST appeals and revisions – authorized representative

In case a person is not able to appear personally before the requisite GST appeal authority, he may assign an authorized authority to appear on his behalf. An authorized representative may be any one of the following:

  • A relative
  • A regular employee
  • A lawyer practising in any court in India
  • Any Chartered Accountant / Cost Accountant / Company Secretary, with a valid certificate of practice
  • A Retired Officer of the Tax Department of any State Government or of the Excise Department whose rank was at least that of a Group B gazetted officer*
  • Any tax return preparer

*Note: Retired officers cannot appear in place of the concerned person within 1 year from the date of their retirement, as per the provisions of GST appeals and revisions.

Scenarios when GST appeal cannot be filed

As per the provisions for appeals and revisions under GST, appeals cannot be made for the following decisions taken by a GST officer –

  • An order to transfer the proceedings from one officer to another officer
  • An order to seize or retain books of accounts and / or other documents
  • An order sanctioning prosecution under the GST Act
  • An order allowing payment of taxes and other amounts in instalments

Also, it may be noted that the Board or the State Government may, on the recommendation of the Council, fix minimum monetary limits for which a GST officer can approve and regulate the filing of appeals. This will avoid unnecessary litigation expenses, where the expense does not justify the amount of tax which is under dispute. In such cases also, an appeal will not be feasible.

When to Pay GST – Liability for Death, Dissolution & Other Cases

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In our previous blog, we had studied about various provisions which defined the liability to pay unpaid GST for certain business specific scenarios, such as transfers, mergers and liquidations. In this blog, we will go through some more company specific scenarios – such as when to pay GST and the associated liability in case of death, dissolution, partition, termination and reconstitution.

Liability in case of death

In case a taxable person who is liable to pay unpaid tax, interest or penalty dies, then the following provisions are to be followed to understand when to pay GST and by whom:

  • If business if continued – If the business is carried on after the death of a person, by his legal heir or legal representative or any other person, then the legal heir or legal representative will be held liable for the unpaid dues
  • If business is discontinued – If the business carried on by the person is discontinued, whether before or after his death, his legal heir or legal representative will be liable to pay the unpaid amount. However, the payment will be made out of the estate of the deceased, only to the extent up to which the estate is capable of meeting the unpaid tax, interest or penalty. At any point in time, the legal heir or legal representative will not be personally liable and needs to be aware about when to pay GST i.e. the pending dues.

Note: The liability in case of death will hold true if the unpaid tax, interest or penalty was determined before the death of the taxable person but is unpaid or undetermined after death.

Liability in case of partition of HUF / AOP

In case a taxable person who is liable to pay unpaid tax, interest or penalty is part of Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) or an Association of Persons (AOP), and the property of the HUF or AOP is partitioned amongst the various members or group of members, then each member or group of members, shall be jointly and severally, liable to pay the unpaid tax, interest or penalty, up to the time of the partition, and thus needs to be well informed about when to pay GST.

Note: The liability in case of partition of HUF / AOP holds true if the unpaid tax, interest or penalty was determined before the partition but is unpaid or undetermined after partition.

Liability in case of dissolution of firm

In case a taxable person who is liable to pay unpaid tax, interest or penalty is a partnership firm, and the firm is dissolved, then every person who was a partner shall be jointly and severally, liable to pay the unpaid tax, interest or penalty due from the firm, up to the time of dissolution. Such a person needs to understand the liability provisions in order to determine when to pay GST.

Note: The liability in case of dissolution of firm will hold true if the unpaid tax, interest or penalty was determined before the dissolution but is unpaid or undetermined after dissolution.

Liability in case of termination of guardianship or trust

In case a taxable person who is liable to pay unpaid tax, interest or penalty is either a guardian of a ward on whose behalf the business is carried out by him, or, is a trustee who carries on the business under a trust for a beneficiary, and the guardianship or trust is terminated, then the ward or the beneficiary shall be liable to pay the unpaid tax, interest or penalty due from the taxable person, up to the time of termination, post which the due date i.e. when to pay GST can be determined.

Note: The liability in case of termination of guardianship or trust holds true if the unpaid tax, interest or penalty was determined before the termination but is unpaid or undetermined after termination.

Liability in case of discontinuance of business by firm, HUF or AOP

In case a taxable person who is liable to pay unpaid tax, interest or penalty is either a firm or a HUF or an AOP, and the firm, HUF or AOP has decided to discontinue the business for some reason, then the following provisions are to be followed to estimate liability and understand when to pay GST:

  • Tax, interest or penalty payable by such a firm, HUF or AOP, up to the date of discontinuance may be determined, as if no discontinuance had taken place
  • Every person, who at the time of the discontinuance, was a partner of the firm or HUF or AOP, shall be jointly and severally, liable for the payment of unpaid tax, interest and penalty, as if he were himself a taxable person.

Note: The liability in case of discontinuance of business will hold true if the unpaid tax, interest or penalty was determined or imposed before or after the discontinuance.

Liability in case of reconstitution of firm or AOP

In certain cases, there are changes made to the constitution of a firm or an association of persons (AOP), which is known as a reconstitution. In such cases, all the partners of the firm or members of the association, who were there at the time of the reconstitution, shall be jointly and severally, liable to pay the unpaid tax, interest and penalty, as they exist either before or after the reconstitution. The liability in case of reconstitution of firm or AOP will hold true under all circumstances, and will need to be understood by all stakeholders who need to then become aware of when to pay GST.

10 Year end Tax Planning Tips – A Guide for GSTPs

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Year-end is always a crucial period for most businesses. Most businesses will undergo a time-crunch, primarily because they need to close the books of the current financial year, and prepare themselves to start afresh from the new financial year. However, March 31st, 2018 will be more hectic compared to previous year-ends which a business would have faced, because this is the first year end in the GST era. Needless to say, the role of a tax consultant, or a tax return preparer, will become all the more important – since apart from the usual year end practices, they will also need to guide their clients for a few additional things, as they help them to file the last returns and close the books of accounts. In this blog, we will attempt to list out 10 year end tax planning tips, you can tell your client, if you are a tax consultant.

10 year end tax planning tips for your clients

  • Books of Accounts – Books of Accounts should be finalized for two different periods – one pre-GST and one post-GST. Thus one finalization will be from the period 1st April, 2017 to 30th June, 2017, and another finalization will be from the period 1st July, 2017 to 31st March, 2018. Books of Accounts will thus need to be carefully closed.
  • Transitional Credit – The department is going to scrutinize all the cases of Transitional credits of old taxes paid in the previous tax regime, while migrating to the GST regime. The taxpayer who has claimed transitional credit, should ensure that the following activities are completed, as part of year end tax planning:
    • Maintain copy of 6 months returns – From Jan 2017 to June 2017
    • Maintain copy of GST TRAN 1 – while ensuring that the stock as per GST TRAN 1 is matching with the finalized books of accounts i.e. stock as on 30th June, 2017
    • Maintain certified copy of invoices with tax paid bills
    • Maintain certified copy of Stock Summary
    • Check and file GST TRAN 2 before 31st March, 2018, for claiming transitional credit against the sale of stock for which tax paid documents are not available
  • Verification of Purchases – Although Form GSTR 2 has been deferred for the time being, a business can still see the Form GSTR 2A in the GST portal. From the same form, one can take a stock of monthly purchases from made from registered dealers, and verify the same with records of purchases in the books. Doing this will allow businesses to take the necessary steps to reconcile the books properly, as part of year end tax planning.
  • Reconciliation – This would be the right time to reconcile sales and purchases as well as the GST tax liability along with the Form GSTR 3B returns. If there are any differences, the same should be brought into the Form GSTR 3B of March 2018. One should thus reconcile the cash ledger, credit ledger and liability ledger, with the books of accounts, and ensure that all entries are completed before the year ends. At the same time, debit notes, credit notes, rate differences, discounts etc. also have to be accounted for, and the effect of these have to reflect in the returns being filed.
  • Reversal of ITC – As per the Input Tax Credit rules, if the recipient does not make full payment within 180 days of the issuance of the tax invoice, then the ITC taken on that invoice is to be reversed. The ITC will be made available again, only when the payment is made. Thus ageing analysis of the debtors and creditors should be done, and all old invoices which have been issued before 1st October, 2017 should be paid before 31st of March, 2018.
  • GST Turnover Check – Before the new-year starts, taxpayers will need to check their annual GST turnover in FY 2017-18. The turnover under GST, will be an integral part of year end tax planning for the business in FY 2018-19, which are as follows:
    • How many digits should HSN Code have in Invoice? – Taxpayers whose turnover is above INR 1.5 Crores but below INR 5 Crores shall use 2 digit codes and the taxpayers whose turnover is above INR 5 Crores will need to use 4 digit codes. Also, taxpayers whose turnover is below INR 1.5 Crores are not required to mention HSN codes in their invoice at all.
    • Whether to file Monthly or Quarterly GSTR 1 Returns? – Taxpayers whose turnover is above INR 1.5 Crores will have to file monthly GSTR 1 returns, while those taxpayers whose aggregate turnover is less than INR 1.5 Crores will have an option to file quarterly GSTR 1 returns.
    • Whether to go for Composition Scheme? –In Special Category States the turnover limit for Composition Scheme is 75 lakhs, whereas in Rest of India the limit is INR 1.5 Crores. Depending on the turnover, a business may decide to go for Composition Scheme in the new financial year, in which case he will need to apply for the same in Form GST CMP 02 before 31st March, 2018. Similarly, all those who wants to cancel the registration under composition scheme will have to apply for the same in Form GST CMP 04 before 7th April.
    • Cancellation of Registration – In the unlikely scenario, that a business who had taken voluntary registration under GST, does not want to continue, either because of lower turnover or closure of business, they can apply to cancel their registration
  • New Series for Tax Invoice – If anyone wants to change the series for invoicing or billing in the new year, then he can do that from 1st April, 2018.
  • Depreciation on Capital Assets – If ITC has been claimed on the purchase of fixed assets, or capital assets, then a business should not include the same in the cost of the asset, while calculating the value of depreciating assets.
  • Anti-profiteering – As per the directives of the government and the GST Council, businesses are to compare the Gross Profits for the FY 2016-17, FY 17-18 and for the periods April 2017 to June 2017 and July 2017 to March 2018. If the gross profit ratio for March 2018 is higher, then a business will need to check whether the credit for the profit has been passed on to the customer or not.
  • Important Return Filing Dates – There are various important return filing dates in April and May which businesses need to be aware of:
    • 10th April – Monthly GSTR 1 to be filled by Regular Dealer for February 2018
    • 18th April – GSTR 4 to be filled by Composition Dealer for Jan to March 2018
    • 20th April – GSTR 3B to be filled by for March 2018
    • 30th April – Quarterly GSTR 1 to be filed by Regular Dealer for Jan to March 2018
    • 10th May – Monthly GSTR 1 to be filled by Regular Dealer for March 2018

Last but not the least, the e-way bill is going to be rolled out from the 1st of April, 2018. Besides all the important activities listed above for year end tax planning, tax consultants will also need to guide their clients to successfully use the right technology to generate e-way bills, and navigate the e-way bill portal without hassle, to ensure a smooth movement of goods both within and between States.

Liability to Pay GST which is unpaid – For Stakeholders

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Liability to pay GST – For Agent and Principal

If an agent supplies or receives any taxable goods on behalf of his principal, then both the agent and the principal will be liable to pay unpaid GST, jointly and severally. This defines the liability to pay GST for both agents and principal.

Liability of Directors of Private Company

If a private company does not pay its dues, then the directors of the company will become jointly and severally liable for the dues, i.e. there will be some personal liability for directors. In this case, only the directors who were in office during the period when the tax was due, will have the liability to pay GST. However, if a director can prove to the tax commissioner that the non-payment was not due to any negligence or breach of duty due to his part, then he will not be held liable.

Note: Nothing has been specified as such in the GST Act with regards to conversion or transfer of a private company to a public company. However, a rule in this section states, that this provision does not apply when a private company is converted to a public company. Thus, it can be interpreted to mean that this provision does not apply to public limited companies.

Liability of Partners of a Partnership Firm

In a partnership firm, all the partners have unlimited liability. Similarly under GST, the partners of the firm are jointly and severally liable to pay unpaid GST which is due irrespective of any clause in the partnership deed or any other law.

In case of retirement of a partner, the commissioner must be informed of the same by the firm or the retiring partner. This is because, it could be possible that the retiring partner could have the liability to pay GST until the date of his retirement. If any intimation regarding the retirement is not given within 1 month, the retiring partner will continue to face liabilty for unpaid GST, till such an intimation is received by the commissioner.

Liability of Guardians, Trustees, Agents

Liability to pay GST comes into play when any business is conducted by a guardian or trustee or agent on behalf of and for the benefit of a minor or an incapacitated person. In case of any tax amount due, both the guardians or trustees or agents and the beneficiary will be liable to pay under the GST Act, and the due amount may be recovered from both parties. Thus, it is important to understand GST liability of guardians, GST liability of trustees and GST liability of agents, for such scenarios.

Liability of Court of Wards

This scenario is applicable, when the estate of a taxable person owning a business, is under the control of the Court of Wards or the Administrator General or the Official Trustee or any receiver or manager appointed by a court. In such a case, if the business owes any amount under GST, then all entities will be equally held liable, i.e. the Court of Wards, the Administrator General, the Official trustee, any receiver or manager along with the taxable person.

Invoicing under GST

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Invoicing is a crucial aspect of tax compliance for every business. It is essential to be aware of the rules of invoicing under GST. Let us understand these in detail.

Invoicing in the current tax regimes

In the current tax regimes, tw

o types of invoices are issued:

  1. Tax invoice – This is issued to registered dealers, and can be used to claim tax credit. Sample formats of the two main types of tax invoice in the current tax regime, the Rule 11 Excise invoice and tax invoice are shown below.
    invoicing-under-gst
  2. Retail or commercial invoice – This is issued to an unregistered dealer or retail customer, and no tax credit can be claimed on this invoice. Sample format of a retail invoice in the current tax regime is shown below.
    retail-commercial-invoice

 

Invoicing in the GST regime

In the GST regime, two types of invoices will be issued:

  1. Tax invoice
  2. Bill of supply

Tax invoice

When a registered taxable person supplies taxable goods or services, a tax invoice is issued. Based on the rules regarding details required in a tax invoice, a sample tax invoice has been shown below.

gst invoice sample

What is the time limit for issue of tax invoice?

Supply of goods The tax invoice must be issued before or at the time ofRemoval of goods, where supply involves movement of goods

E.g. – When Super Cars Ltd, a car manufacturer, supplies cars to its dealer Ravindra Automobiles, the invoice must be issued at the time of removal of the cars from Super Cars Ltd’s premises. This is because the supply involves movement of the cars to Ravindra Automobiles’ premises.

OR

Delivery of goods to the recipient, where supply does not require movement of goods

E.g. – Super Cars Ltd purchases a generator set, which will be assembled and installed at the factory premises by the supplier. Here, since the supply does not require movement of the generator set, the invoice must be issued at the time when the generator set is made available to Super Cars Ltd.

Supply of services The tax invoice must be issued within 30 days from the date of supply of the service.
Where the supplier is a bank or any financial institution, the invoice must be issued within 45 days of the supply of service.

Note: In case a person paying tax on reverse charge receives goods or services from an unregistered supplier, the receiver must issue an invoice on the date of receipt of goods or services.

How many copies of the tax invoice are required?

For supply of goods, three copies of the invoice are required – Original, Duplicate, and Triplicate.

Original invoice: The original invoice is issued to the receiver, and is marked as ‘Original for recipient’.

Duplicate copy: The duplicate copy is issued to the transporter, and is marked as ‘Duplicate for transporter’. This is not required if the supplier has obtained an invoice reference number.  The Invoice reference number is given to a supplier when he uploads a tax invoice issued by him in the GST portal. It is valid for 30 days from the date of upload of invoice.

Triplicate copy: This copy is retained by the supplier, and is marked as ‘Triplicate for supplier’.

copies of GST tax invoice

For supply of services, two copies of the invoice are required:

  • Original Invoice: The original copy of the invoice is to be given to receiver, and is marked as ‘Original for recipient’.
  • Duplicate Copy: The duplicate copy is for the supplier, and is marked as ‘Duplicate for supplier’.

Copies of tax invoice for supply of services

What details must a tax invoice for export contain?

An export invoice must, in addition to the details required in a tax invoice, contain the following details:

Export invoice
Must have the words ‘“Supply meant for export on payment of IGST” or “Supply meant for export under bond without payment of IGST”
Name and address of the recipient
Delivery address
Number and date of ARE-1 (application for removal of goods for export)

Bill of Supply

Bill of Supply is to be issued by a registered supplier in the following cases:

  • Supply of exempted goods or services
  • Supplier is paying tax under composition scheme

Based on the rules regarding details required in a Bill of supply, a sample Bill of Supply has been shown below.

GST Bill of Supply format

The bill of supply need not be issued when the value of goods or services supplied is less than Rs 100, unless the receiver insists for the bill. However, a consolidated bill of supply should be prepared at the end of the business day for all such supplies for which the bill of supply is not issued.

How to revise the values of an invoice already issued?

To revise the taxable value or GST charged in an invoice, a debit note or supplementary invoice or credit note must be issued by the supplier.

Debit note/supplementary invoice- These are to be issued by a supplier to record increase in taxable value &/or GST charged in the original invoice.

Credit note- These are to be issued by a supplier to record decrease in taxable value &/or GST charged in the original invoice. Credit note must be issued on or before 30th September following the end of the financial year in which the supply was made OR the date of filing of the relevant annual return, whichever is earlier.

Let us understand the time limit for issue of credit note with an example.

Example

Super Cars Ltd sells spare parts worth Rs. 6,00,000 to its dealer Ravindra Automobiles on 1st November ‘17.  On 2nd November ’17, Ravindra Automobiles returned spare parts worth Rs 1,00,000, being damaged goods. Super Cars Ltd wants to raise a credit note for the goods returned.

Let us ascertain the last date by when Super Cars Ltd must issue the credit note using 2 scenarios-

Scenario 1- They file annual return of the Financial Year 17-18 on 1st December ‘18

Scenario 2- They file annual return of the Financial Year 17-18 on 31st May ‘18.

Scenario Date of original supply Annual return filing date Condition for determining last date to issue credit note Last date for issuing credit note
Scenario 1 1st November 2017 1st December ‘18 30th September following the end of the financial year in which the supply was made or the date of filing annual return, whichever is earlier 30th September ‘18
Scenario 2 31st May ‘18 31st May ‘18

 

What details should debit notes, supplementary invoices and credit notes include?

Debit notes, supplementary invoices and credit notes must include the following details:

Debit note/Supplementary Invoice/Credit Note
Nature of the document must be indicated prominently, such as ‘revised invoice’ or ‘supplementary invoice’
Name, address, and GSTIN of the supplier
A consecutive serial number containing only alphabets and/or numerals, unique for a financial year
Date of issue of the document
If recipient is registered- Name, address and GSTIN/Unique ID number of the recipient
If recipient is unregistered- Name, address of recipient and address of delivery, with state name and code
Serial number and date of the original tax invoice or bill of supply
Taxable value of the goods or services, rate of tax and the amount of tax credited or debited to the recipient
Signature or digital signature of the supplier or his authorized representative

How to File Your GST Returns

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Every registered taxable person has to furnish outward supply details in Form GSTR-1 by the 10th of the subsequent month. On the 11th, the visibility of inward supplies is made available to the recipient in the auto-populated GSTR-2A. The period from 11thto 15th will allow for any corrections (additions, modifications and deletion) in Form GSTR-2A and submission in Form GSTR-2 by 15th of the subsequent month.The corrections (addition, modification and deletion) by the recipient in Form GSTR-2 will be made available to supplier in Form GSTR-1A. The supplier has to accept or reject the adjustments made by the recipient. The Form GSTR-1 will be amended according to the extent of correction accepted by supplier.

On 20th, the auto-populated return GSTR-3 will be available for submission along with the payment. After the due date of filing the monthly return Form GSTR-3, the inward supplies will be matched with the outward supplies furnished by supplier, and then the final acceptance of input tax credit will be communicated in Form GST ITC-1.

Also, the mismatch input tax credit on account of excess claims or duplication claims will be communicated in Form GST ITC-1.Discrepancies not ratified will be added as output tax liability along with interest. However, within the prescribed time, if it is ratified, the recipient will be eligible to reduce this output tax liability.

Let us understand this with an example.

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How to Amend, Cancel, or Revoke GST Registration

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Let us now understand how to:

  • Amend your registration details
  • Apply for cancellation of registration
  • Revoke your registration if it is cancelled

Amending Your Registration Details

  • Any change in details furnished at the time of registration must be submitted within 15 days from the date of such changes in Form GST REG-11.
  • Specific changes in Form GST REG-11 relating to the name of the business, partner details, managing committee, and so on, require approval from an officer. After verification, an approval order by the officer is sent in Form GST REG-12 to amend the details.
  • Changes in business details that result in change of PAN number of the registered tax payer, require a fresh registration in Form GST REG-01.

Amending GST Registration

Applying for Cancellation of Registration

  • A registered taxable person seeking cancellation of registration, should submit Form GST REG-14 along with details of closing stock and other relevant documents.
  • Within 7 days, a notice in Form GST REG-15 is issued to the taxable person to show cause with reason for such cancellation.
  • After verification and approval by an officer, cancellation order in  Form GST REG-16 is issued within 30 days from the date of receipt of Form GST REG-15 or date of show cause.

How to Cancel GST Registration

A taxable person who has voluntarily registered is allowed to apply for cancellation only after completion of 1 year of registration. An officer determines the effective date of cancellation after directing the taxable person to clear any tax arrears and penalty, if any.

Revoking a Cancelled Registration

  • In case the registration is cancelled by an officer, a taxable person can apply for revocation by submitting Form GST REG-17 within 30 days from date of cancellation order.
  • If the officer requires additional details or clarification, Form GST REG-3 is issued within 3 working days.
  • The taxable person then needs to respond by providing requisite details in Form GST REG-4 (within 7 working days).
  • If the officer is satisfied, the cancellation is revoked by issuing an order in Form GST REG-18 within 30 days from date of such application.
  • If the officer is not satisfied, the revocation application is rejected in Form GST REG-5. Prior to this rejection, the taxable person will be issued a show cause notice in Form GST REG-19 and hearing.

Revoke Cancelled GST Registration

GST Registration for Existing Dealers

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With each passing day, we are moving one step closer to the GST regime. The GST Bill has been  approved by President and the GST Council is in the process for forming the rules. As business begin their preparation towards the new taxation system, obtaining GST registration is the first step.

Liability for Registration in GST

Region Aggregate Turnover
Liability to Register Liability for Payment of Tax
North East India Rs 9 Lakhs Rs 10 Lakhs
Rest of India Rs 19 Lakhs Rs 20 Lakhs

This ensures that on the day a dealer crosses Rs 20 Lakhs turnover, he is already registered, need to start charging GST, and is eligible to claim input tax credit. All existing dealers registered with any of the current laws (VAT/Excise/Service Tax) will also need to register under GST by default.

Important Note: The turnover considered here is the aggregate pan-India turnover (including value of non-taxable, exempt and export supplies) of a business entity, and not state-wise.

Example

Let us take an example to illustrate the liability of business to register under GST.

Super Cars Ltd. is a car manufacturing unit in Karnataka. They own ‘Super Cars Service Ltd’, a service unit located in Karnataka and Delhi. Additional details are furnished in the table below:

Business Unit Location PAN Number Turnover (Rs)
Super Cars Ltd. Karnataka AEHCS3476M 125 Lakhs
Super Cars Service Ltd. Karnataka AEHCS3476M 20 Lakhs
Super Cars Service Ltd. Delhi AEHCS3476M 10 Lakhs

As per the example,

  • All 3 units are registered under the same PAN AEHCS3476M
  • To arrive at the aggregate turnover, the turnover of all the 3 units (Super Cars Ltd. and Super Cars Service Ltd. located in Karnataka and Delhi) will be considered.
  • Therefore, the aggregate turnover will be Rs 155 Lakhs (Super Cars Ltd. Rs 125 Lakhs + Super Cars Service Ltd. of Karnataka Rs 20 Lakhs + Super Cars Services Ltd. of Delhi Rs 10 Lakhs) and are required to register under GST.

For Whom is Registration Mandatory?

The following categories of suppliers need to mandatorily register irrespective of turnover:

  • Taxable person carrying on interstate supply
  • Casual and non-resident taxable persons
  • Businesses liable to pay tax under reverse charge
  • Agents supplying on behalf of taxable person
  • Input service distributor
  • Sellers on e-commerce platforms
  • Aggregator supplying services under his brand name
  • Persons responsible to deduct TDS

Registration Forms for Dealers Registered under Existing Central and State Tax

  • All dealers registered with central or state tax authorities will be auto-migrated and allotted with a provisional certificate of registration in Form GST REG-21.
  • Within 6 months, dealers are required to submit Form GST REG-20 in the GST Portal along with information and documents as prescribed.
  • If the information provided is complete and satisfactory, final registration certificate will be issued in Form GST REG-06.
  • If the details submitted are not satisfactory, a show cause notice will be issued in Form GST REG-23, and there will be a hearing before cancelling the provisional registration. If the show cause hearing is not successful, or if the details are not provided within the stipulated period, the provisional registration allotted in Form GST REG-21 will be cancelled by issuing an order in Form GST REG-22.

Register for GST -Existing Delaers

During transition, if a taxable person is not required to register under GST, but was previously registered (Central and State law), he has an option to cancel the provisional registration issued by submitting the Form GST REG-24.

 

How is GST Different from Current Tax Structure

GST (Goods & Service Tax), a single unified tax system aims at uniting India’s complex taxation structure to a ‘One Nation- One Tax’ regime. It is the biggest tax reform since India’s independence.

What does this mean? What will be its impact?

GST proposes to remove the geographical barriers for trading, and transform the entire nation to ‘One Common Market Place’.

Let us understand the fundamentals of GST, it is a dual concept tax system. Under this system, tax is administered, collected, and shared by both the Centre and the State governments, based on the nature of transaction (within the state or interstate).

The tax components of GST 

 

While we now know the tax components of GST, it is equally important for you to know the taxes existing in the current regime, and how they are subsumed under GST.

Current Indirect Tax structure

Current Tax structure Vs GST

 

Taxes subsumed under GST