GST Council eases compliance burden for businesses

GST Council eases compliance burden for businesses

New Delhi/Kolkata: The 40th Goods and Services Tax Council Meeting, chaired by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, was held on June 12 through video conferencing.

The meeting was also attended by Union Minister of State for Finance & Corporate Affairs Anurag Thakur besides Finance Ministers of States & UTs and senior officers of the Ministry of Finance& States/ UTs.

The GST Council decided to further ease compliance burden of businesses by providing relief on late free and interest payable on late payments. It reduced late fee and interest for those with tax liabilities and waived off late fee completely for those with no tax liabilities.

The Centre announced a rate cut for small taxpayers, adding that no late fees would be charged in case of late filing of returns for the period between July 2017 to January 2020 by those without tax liabilities.

“For all those who have no tax liabilities but have not filed their returns between July 2017 and January 2020 there will be zero late fees,” FM Nirmala Sitharaman said.

“For people who have tax liability, maximum late fee for non-filing of GSTR-3B returns for period July 2017 – January 2020 has been capped to Rs 500,” she added.

As a measure to clean up pendency in return filing, late fee for non-furnishing FORM GSTR-3B for the tax period from July, 2017 to January, 2020 has been reduced / waived as- ‘NIL’ late fee if there is no tax liability and Maximum late fee capped at Rs. 500/- per return if there is any tax liability.

The reduced rate of late fee would apply for all the GSTR-3B returns furnished between 01.07.2020 to 30.09.2020.

Further relief for small taxpayers for late filing of returns for February, March & April 2020 Tax periods: For small taxpayers (aggregate turnover upto Rs. 5 crore), for the supplies effected in the month of February, March and April, 2020, the rate of interest for late furnishing of return for the said months beyond specified dates (staggered upto 6th July 2020) is reduced from 18% per annum to 9% per annum till 30.09.2020. In other words, for these months, small taxpayers will not be charged any interest till the notified dates for relief (staggered upto 6th July 2020) and thereafter 9% interest will be charged till 30.09.2020.

Relief for small taxpayers for subsequent tax periods (May, June & July 2020): In wake of COVID-19 pandemic, for taxpayers having aggregate turnover upto Rs. 5 crore, further relief provided by waiver of late fees and interest if the returns in FORM GSTR-3B for the supplies effected in the months of May, June and July, 2020 are furnished by September, 2020 (staggered dates to be notified).

One time extension in period for seeking revocation of cancellation of registration: To facilitate taxpayers who could not get their cancelled GST registrations restored in time, an opportunity is being provided for filing of application for revocation of cancellation of registration up to 30.09.2020, in all cases where registrations have been cancelled till 12.06.2020.

Certain clauses of the Finance Act, 2020 amending CGST Act 2017 and IGST Act, 2017 to be brought into force from 30.06.2020.

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