India’s biggest tax reform, the Goods and Services Tax started in July 2017, is undergoing several changes challenging the modus operandi of current GST Return Filing system. This is a further rollout that applies to both goods and services with a definitely greater compliance focus on transparency of trade data for matching between traders, thereby improving the efficiency in the current GST Return Filing system in the country, and in turn, a larger revenue for the government.
The main focus of GST in India is on the transparency of tax payer’s declaration of sales & purchases, which can only be effectively done using software with inbuilt artificial intelligence both from the government and the tax payers to facilitate the data matching process. The tax system with intended data matching functionality however will not efficiently work with existing desktop software where majority of businesses previously use to manage their sales and purchases even with the GST compliant upgrades due to the direct and vigorous online data matching is required in the reporting process. Business will either need to use cloud based GST preparation software which has inbuilt connectivity with GSP services for continuous mismatch data download to perform online data correction and reconcile the ledger or risk the opportunity to identify for all data mismatch, attend to reconcile the errors and the books, consequently facing heavy penalties imposed as a negligence to comply with GST legislation.
GST registered businesses must file GST reports every quarter/month and an annual return to GSTN. The process of data collection and data management for use in the preparation of GST reports must be systematic perhaps even at point of sales for both buyers and sellers to minimise the time consume and any possible mismatch. For bigger businesses, data collection and compliance reporting process is generally managed systematically and by their own in house accounting team but the luxury of such system is not likely to be available for most .
We help such small or medium businesses with our GST Facilitation team as an extended service for GST Return Filing. We have much sophisticated in-house GST preparation software and a team of GST Professionals with more up to date knowledge on GST and its reporting requirements.
Inadequate knowledge of how to prepare and file GST returns will result in an improper treatment of books of accounts which is serious to irreversible consequences. Recent incident where a small retailer neglected to report Rs15 in the GST report filed to GSTN was heavily fined at Rs 20, 000. As part of the GST legislation, every registered taxable business is required to keep record of their book that coherently shows the statement of cash and tax credit either by cash, cheque or by bank transfers for at least 60 months.
Failure to keep and maintain accounting records of their business transactions that were recorded in the filed GST reports, will lead to undesirable consequences.
Accounting transactions under GST without a GST ledger is like ending the financial year without auditing your business to ensure accuracy and absence of loopholes. Businesses are encouraged to take up thee services in our GST Facilitation Centre to maintain their books and get expert advice to minimise the chance of getting undesirable attention from the GST Scrutiny team.