Various trade and industry bodies had demanded the due date be extended.
NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 9
In a move that would cheerbusiness firms and traders, the Finance Ministry has extended the due date for filing annual return by three more months.
“The competent authority has decided to extend the due date for filing FORM GSTR-9, FORM GSTR-9A and FORM GSTR-9C till 31st March, 2019,” a statement issued by the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Custom (CBIC) said, while adding that the requisite forms shall be made available on the Goods and Services Tax (GST) common portal shortly. Earlier, the last date was December 31, 2018.
Various trade and industry bodies had demanded the due date be extended. Their contention was that till today the format of filing of annual GST Return and even option is not available anywhere including on the GST website. They argued that the annual GST return assumes much significance as it gives last opportunity to assessees to rectify their previous returns filed with the department for that particular year.
In separate petitions to the Finance Ministry, industry chambers said that tax payers and professionals spend more time resolving and reloading the returns. Further, registration of HSN-wise declaration of inward and outward supply of goods has been a huge hassle for the tax payers. HSN code for inward supplies was not required for GSTR-3B returns, but the same had to be mentioned in the annual return.
Tax payers will have to scrutinise all their past purchases and monthly past returns to fill up the particulars in the annual return. For those engaged in small business/trade, the process is found to be more strenuous and time consuming as they do not have the expertise to review all past purchases. With due dates for filing GSTR-3B extended for different months, compliance on payment of interest and late fee has become cumbersome, the chambers said.
“This was quite a sought after extension by the industry; specifically for most of those industry players who have been struggling to collate information required to be disclosed in GSTR-9 and GSTR-9C,” Abhishek Jain, Tax Partner at Ernst and Young (EY), said.
Anita Rastogi, Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), felt that was the need of the hour as enough and more work is required to be done in order to file annual returns and conduct GST audit. “In fact, utility on the GST portal for both of these have still not been made available to public,” she said.