GSTR9 : 10 Common mistakes to avoid while filing GSTR-9 Annual Return

There are only few days left for the deadline to file the first ever annual GST return – form GSTR-9 for the FY 2017-18. The Government is going to pay extra attention to defaulters. The taxpayers need to be cautious to avoid making any errors, as there is no way to amend or revise the GSTR-9 return once filed. Some common mistakes which a taxpayer should avoid in order to avoid further consequences.

  1. File your annual GST return on time

In the case of GSTR-9, the Government has already clarified that no further extensions will be given along with some other clarification in the recent Press Release. Taxpayers should take note of this and file their GST returns well before the deadline as this could save interest and penalties. It will also save them from the issue of a demand notice in cases where filing of GST return is missed.

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  1. File separate GSTR-9 return for every State/Union Territory

As GST returns are filed on the basis of a GSTIN held by a business. Businesses having operations in multiple States/UTs need to file a separate GSTR-9 annual return for each State/UT, and not for the entire company/business as a whole.

  1. Do not Report April-June 2017 transactions while filing GSTR-9

GST was introduced in India in July 2017, which means the first year of filing the annual return form GSTR-9 will only be for 9 months and not for the entire year. Taxpayers need to be extremely careful while reporting transactions for FY 17-18 as only data for the 9-month period i.e July 2017 to March 2018 needs to be reported.

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  1. Mismatch of filed data in monthly and quarterly returns

Taxpayers should ensure that all monthly and quarterly filed returns match with the data reported in the GSTR-9. Mismatch of data could be one of the primary causes of getting a demand notice at a later date from the GST Department. While the due date for making amendments to data of FY 17-18 has passed, taxpayers can still disclose any additional tax liability in the GSTR-9 return. The same can be paid in form DRC-03.

  1. Maintain proper documentation

Before filing the annual return, the taxpayer shall reconcile, verify and report only accurate information. In addition to this, the taxpayer should ensure that there is substantial documentary proof of all data that is reported in the return, in order to avoid unnecessary hassles at a later date. This is also important in case of vary of data between audited income tax financial statement and GST audit. One should have the proof for the same.

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  1. Segregation of data in the annual return

The annual GST return asks for the bifurcation of data across various fields such as input tax credit, HSN codes, demands and refunds etc. These details are not required at the time of filing the monthly or quarterly GST Returns. Hence, going in deep into the books of accounts will be necessary to find and report this data accurately in the GSTR-9 return.

  1. GST Audit where turnover is above 2 crores for the period April 2017- March 2018.

There is the confusion among the person whether GST Audit is required when the turnover is less than 2 crore in GST Period. For the purpose of turnover requirement for GST Audit, turnover of whole Financial Year is to be checked. But the audit is done for the period of July 2017 to March 2018. A business whose turnover exceeds 2 crore rupees is required to get their books of accounts audited by either a Chartered Accountant (CA)or a Cost Accountant(CMA). A reconciliation statement between the audited financial statements and the annual return, is submitted in form GSTR-9C. The due date to furnish GSTR-9C is also the 30th of June 2019.

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  1. Forgetting to file a Nil return

Taxpayers registered under GST have to compulsorily file an annual return for the period up till which their registration is cancelled. Even in cases where there have been no transactions during the year, a Nil return needs to be filed.

  1. HSN/ SAC summary of Both inward and outward supply

HSN and Sac summary is important. As rate or nature of goods or services are better described with the code assigned to each good or service. But a relief is given for the taxpayers having turnover upto 1.5 crore. As it is not compulsory for such taxpayers to give HSN or SAC details.

  1. Form DRC-03

Drc-03 is a self declaration form for making voluntary payment or show cause notice payment. Payments made through FORM DRC-03 for any supplies relating to period between July 2017 to March 2018 will not be accounted for in FORM GSTR-9 but shall be reported during reconciliation in FORM GSTR-9C.


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