Good and Services Tax Overview
In 2017 the Goods and Service Tax came into effect across India. It replaced all other indirect taxes such as central excise duty, state VAT, central sales tax, purchase tax, etc. levied on goods or services. The government has appointed a GST council comprising of 33 members. The head of gst council is the Finance Minister.
Registration under GST is compulsory for all entities, including every individual / Company / LLP if the aggregate turnover of the entity exceeds 20 lakhs for goods and 40 lakhs for services.
It is mandatory for the following entities to register for GST:
Business entities with a turnover exceeding Rs 20 lakhs for goods and Rs 40 lakhs for services respectively
Business entities in Jammu & Kashmir, Uttarakhand, and Himachal Pradesh as well as North-Eastern states with a turnover exceeding Rs 10 lakhs
Business entities registered under any of the previous taxation regimes
All agencies, agents and suppliers
Entities required to pay tax under reverse taxation
All E-commerce entities, whether aggregators or suppliers
You will need to keep soft copies of the following documents on hand to complete the GST registration process –
PAN Card for the business as well as for the person applying on behalf of the business
Business registration document to verify the existence of the business as a legal entity. For example, an Incorporation Certificate for a company or a Partnership Deed in case of a partnership, etc.
PAN, Aadhar and DIN number (if applicable) for all promoters, Directors, partners, and owners as appropriate
Document for confirmation of an active bank account
Address proof for the business entity
You may also be required to submit entity-specific documents during the GST registration process, depending on the category selected
Steps for GST Registration
The GST registration process is very straight forward and simple, with almost 99% applications being submitted successfully online. The following steps are a simple guide to help you through the GST registration process.
GST registration should be carried out through the official government GST portal, http://gst.gov.in. To begin the registration process, navigate to the Home Page. On the Home Page, under the Services tab, select Registration, then select New Registration. This will take you to the new registration page.
Once you have navigated to the New Registration Page, you will be required to enter the basic details of your entity. These include Business Name, PAN Number, Email address, Mobile Number, State of Registration etc. Once completed click on the Proceed button to move to the next step.
You should now be on the OTP verification screen. You will receive a mobile OTP and an email OTP which you will be required to fill in the respective OTP fields. Once you have submitted the correct OTPs and verified your identity, you will receive a TRN (Temporary Reference Number). Keep this on hand as it will be required to complete the GST registration process.
Next, you will need to Login into the GST portal using your TRN and the captcha verification process displayed on the screen.
Once logged in successfully, you will need to fill in the appropriate details on the various tabs. In the first tab, you will be required to fill in the various details of your business, such as company name, business’s commencement date, existing registrations, etc.
In the second tab, you will be required to fill in the names of business partners/promoters/proprietor, along with other personal and business details. Remember to save your work after filling up each tab by using the Save and Continue button.
Once all the tabs have been filled out, carefully attach all the required documents taking care to ensure the document formats and sizes are acceptable.
After submitting, you will be required to verify all your application details. Check carefully to make sure everything is correct, and no changes are required. Now enter the name of the authorized signatory and the place from which the application has been filled. Finally, you will be required to digitally sign the application using a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC).
Once you submit the final application along with your Digital Signature attached, an Application Reference Number (ARN) will be generated. The ARN will be sent on your registered email ID and registered mobile number as provided by you on the GST portal. Keep the ARN carefully as it is needed for you to track the status of your application. You will usually receive an application submission acknowledgement within 15 minutes of submission.
If the information provided in the application is accurate and satisfies the GST officer, you will be allotted a 15-digit Goods and Services Tax Identification Number (GSTIN) within three days of submitting your application. In case there are any discrepancies and the officer requires any clarifications, you will be intimated. Submit the clarifications to complete the GST registration process. The GSTIN can be used for various GST-related compliances as required.
After registering their business entities on the GST portal, individuals can proceed to make indirect tax payments and complete the GST return filing process with ease. For convenience, it is best to use a GST invoice format in excel for easy computations.
It is important to note that if your business entity operates and conducts sales from multiple states, you will need to apply for multiple GSTINs, one for each state that you operate from. There are no fees for GST registration.