GST Act makes provisions for Annual Return and Annual Audit Report. These reports are required to be filed for each financial year (April-March) by 31st December after close of financial year.
Each taxable person (other than taxable person paying GST under composition scheme) is required to file monthly return in Form GSTR-3B. In addition, he has to file return in form GSTR-1 giving invoice wise details of his outward supply.
Taxable person paying GST under composition scheme (under section 10 of CGST Act) is required to file quarterly return in form GSTR-4.
In addition to monthly/quarterly return, a taxable person has to file Annual Return. Annual Return in form GSTR-9 is for those who are paying tax under normal scheme, while Annual Return in form GSTR-9A is for those taxable persons who pay tax under composition scheme.
The Annual Return (in form GSTR-9 or GSTR-9A) is basically summary of the monthly/quarterly returns filed by a taxable person. The Annual Return is to be accompanied by Annual Audit Report in case of taxable persons having aggregate turnover exceeding Rs. two crores in the financial year.
The Annual Audit Report (in form GSTR-9C) is basically a reconciliation statement between the Annual Return and the Audited Annual Financial Statement of taxable person. In addition, if Auditor is of the view that some tax, interest, late fee or any other amount is payable or some amount Input Tax Credit is reversible, that has to be disclosed. The Annual Audit Report is required to be certified by practicing CA/CMA.
ANNUAL RETURN OF GST
Annual return has to be filed by 31st December following the close of financial year under section 44 of CGST Act. For financial year 2017-18, the return is required to be filed for the period July 2017 to March 2018.
The return is to be filed by registered person supplying goods or services or both. The Annual return is not required to be filed by Input Service Distributor, person paying TDS under section 51, e-commerce operator paying TCS under section 52, casual taxable person and a non-resident taxable person.
Following Registered persons have to file annual returns –
- Those charging GST invoices paying GST on monthly basis
- Persons paying GST under composition scheme.
Every registered person, other than an Input Service Distributor, a person paying tax under section 51 or section 52, a casual taxable person and a non-resident taxable person, shall furnish an annual return for every financial year electronically in such form and manner as may be prescribed on or before the thirty-first day of December following the end of such financial year – section 44(1) of CGST Act.
NIL ANNUAL RETURN REQUIRED EVEN IF NO TURNOVER IN JULY 2017 TO MARCH 2018
Persons have to file Nil Annual return if they are not paying GST, long as they are registered under GST.
SEPARATE ANNUAL RETURN FOR EACH GSTIN
If a taxable person with same Income Tax PAN has multiple GSTIN, separate annual return in GSTR-9 and separate annual audit report in form GSTR-9C is required for each GSTIN. Thus, the Annual Financial Statement of a taxable has to be first split into separate statement for each GSTIN.
PROCEDURE FOR FILING ANNUAL RETURN IN FORM GSTR-9 OR GSTR-9A
An annual return as specified under section 44(1) of CGST Act will be filed electronically in form GSTR-9 through the Common Portal, by taxable persons other than those paying GST under composition scheme.
A person paying tax under section 10 of CGST Act (composition scheme) shall furnish the annual return in form GSTR-9A – proviso to rule 80(1) of CGST and SGST Rules, 2017.
Forms GSTR-9 and GSTR-9A have been notified on 4-9-2018.
The return for the period July 2017 to March 2018 is to be filed before 31-12-2018.
ANNUAL RETURN IS NOT TO BE USED TO DISCLOSE TURNOVER OR CLAIM ITC FOR 2017-18
The Annual Return is only a summary of turnover, Input Tax Credit (ITC) availed, Tax payable and tax paid. Annual Return cannot be used to disclose turnover or claim ITC for 2017-18.
Such disclosure is required to be made in GSTR-3B and GSTR-1 returns filed during April 2018 to September, 2018 for the period July 2017 to March 2018.
RECTIFICATION OF MISTAKE IN RETURNS FILED DURING JULY 2017 TO APRIL 2018 CAN BE MADE IN SUBSEQUENT RETURNS AND NOT THROUGH ANNUAL RETURN
Subject to provisions of sections 37 and 38, If any taxable person after furnishing a return discovers any omission or incorrect particulars therein, he can rectify such omission or incorrect particulars in the return to be furnished for the month or quarter during which such omission or incorrect particulars are noticed. In prescribed form and manner – section 39(9) of CGST Act. The words in italics inserted vide CGST (Amendment) Act, 2018.
Interest is payable where applicable.
Such rectification cannot be done if mistake or short payment was found during scrutiny, audit, inspection or enforcement activity by the tax authorities.
Such rectification is not allowed after the due date for filing of return for the month of September or second quarter, as the case may be, following the end of the financial year to which such details pertain, or the actual date of filing of relevant annual return, whichever is earlier – proviso to section 39(9) of CGST Act. – – The words in italics inserted vide CGST (Amendment) Act, 2018.
Thus, it is clear that rectification can be done only through subsequent GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B returns and not through annual return.
ANNUAL RETURN IS BROADLY SUMMARY OF GSTR 3B, GSTR-4 AND GSTR 1 FILED
Many of the columns in GSTR-9 and GSTR-9A are parallel to GSTR-3B, GSTR-1 and GSTR-4 returns filed during the period July 2017 to March 2018. The Annual Return is summary of these monthly/quarterly returns. In addition, amendments made during the period April 2018 to September 2018 in respect of prior period of July 2017 to March 2018 are required to be incorporated.
The annual return also contains details of input tax credit availed. Details of ITC reversed under various provisions of Act and Rules is also required.
NO PROVISION IN GSTR-9 OR GSTR-9A TO ADD COMMENTS OR CLARIFICATION
There is no provision in GSTR-9 or GSTR-9A Annual Return forms to add any comment, explanation, declaration or clarification. Thus, if taxable person intends to add any comment, explanation, declaration or clarification, the only alternative is to write separate letter to jurisdictional tax authorities.
However, Auditor in his Audit report and reconciliation statement can state his comments and reservations.