GSTR-9 Annual Return: A Comprehensive Guide to Due Date, Applicability, Turnover Limit, Format, Eligibility & Rules in 2024

Filing the annual GST return in Form GSTR-9 is crucial for reconciliation of the entire year’s transactions. This comprehensive guide will help you understand everything about GSTR-9 including due date, applicability, turnover limit, format, eligibility criteria and rules.

Introduction

The annual return in GSTR-9 requires taxpayers to consolidate their monthly/quarterly GST returns and sales/purchase registers into a single report.

Though complex, filing GSTR-9 is critical for extensive reconciliation of the year’s data to ensure 100% transparent disclosures. Any discrepancies in your books and returns can also be easily identified in your GSTR-9.

This comprehensive guide will clarify all your queries regarding GSTR-9 filing to help you meet the compliance requirement smoothly.

What is GSTR-9?

GSTR-9 is an annual return that every GST registered taxpayer must file by 31st December of the following financial year. The only exceptions are composition taxpayers and certain other specified categories like ISD, TDS deductor etc.

The annual return is divided into 6 parts and 19 sections capturing extensive information about your business’s outward and inward supplies, taxes paid, demands, refunds, ITC, HSN-wise summary of goods/services and more for the whole financial year.

Who Needs to File GSTR-9?

All normal taxpayers with GST registration have to mandatorily file GSTR-9, except:

  • Taxpayers under composition scheme (GSTR-9A)
  • Casual taxable persons
  • Input service distributors
  • Non-resident taxable persons
  • Persons deducting TDS under section 51
  • Persons collecting TCS under section 52

So every other GST registered person has to file GSTR-9. Even if your registration has been cancelled during the financial year, you still need to file the annual return if you were registered for even a single day.

GSTR-9 Turnover Limit

There is no turnover threshold for exemption from GSTR-9 under GST law. However, to reduce compliance burden on small businesses, the government has made the annual return optional for taxpayers with turnover up to Rs 2 crore.

So if your aggregate annual turnover is below Rs 2 crore, you can still voluntarily file GSTR-9 but it is not mandatory.

Due Date for Filing GSTR-9

The due date for filing GSTR-9 for a financial year is 31st December of the next financial year.

For instance, the due date for filing annual return for FY 2022-23 is 31st December 2023.

You must file GSTR-9 on or before the due date to avoid late fees under GST. Delayed filing beyond the due date will attract late fees up to a specified limit based on your turnover.

Details Required in GSTR-9

The annual return Form GSTR-9 is categorized into 6 main parts with 19 sections capturing extensive information:

Part I: Basic details of the taxpayer

Part II: Details of outward and inward supplies declared during the financial year

Part III: Details of ITC for the financial year

Part IV: Details of tax paid as declared in returns filed during the financial year

Part V: Particulars of the transactions for the previous FY declared in returns of April to September of current FY

Part VI: Other details

Let’s understand the key details that a taxpayer needs to fill in each part of GSTR-9:

  1. Basic Details (Part I)

This section captures your taxpayer details like GSTIN, legal name, financial year, GST registration status, state name.

  1. Outward and Inward Supplies (Part II)
  • Annual value and tax liability thereon of supplies made, exported and supplies on which tax is to be paid on reverse charge basis during the year
  • IGST, CGST, SGST split for various types of supplies
  • Supplies made to consumers and unregistered persons on which tax is paid under RCM
  • Sub-classified summary of supplies that are exempt, nil rated, non-GST and no supply (Schedule III)
  • HSN code wise summary of outward supplies
  • Inward supplies attracting reverse charge during the FY
  • Inward supplies from registered suppliers, composition taxpayers and unregistered suppliers
  • Import of goods and services
  1. Input Tax Credit (Part III)
  • Total ITC available, reversed, reclaimed and net ITC available and utilised during the year
  • ITC reversal as per rule 37, 39, 42 & 43 of the CGST Rules
  • ITC of IGST, CGST and SGST classified as inputs, input services and capital goods
  1. Tax Payment (Part IV)
  • Total tax liability, ITC utilised and tax paid in cash for the year
  • Interest, late fees, penalty paid during the year
  • Refund claimed, sanctioned and rejected with details
  1. Previous FY Transactions (Part V)
  • Supplies, ITC and tax liability declared in previous year but declared in current year
  • Tax liability under RCM on supplies received in previous year but declared in current year
  1. Other Details (Part VI)
  • Consolidated statement of advances paid, adjusted, tax payable on those adjustments and details of refund claimed on advances
  • Any other details the taxpayer wants to disclose

Consequences of Not Filing GSTR-9 on Time

Delay in filing GSTR-9 beyond the due date of 31st December will attract late fee, based on your turnover, under Section 47 of CGST Act. The late fees applicable for FY 2022-23 onwards are:

Annual TurnoverLate Fee Amount (Per Day)
Up to Rs 5 croreRs 50 under CGST + Rs 50 under SGST = Rs 100
Over Rs 5 crore and up to Rs 20 croreRs 100 under CGST + Rs 100 under SGST = Rs 200
Above Rs 20 croreRs 200 under CGST + Rs 200 under SGST = Rs 400

The maximum late fee payable is also capped at a specified percentage of the taxpayer’s turnover – 0.04% of turnover in state/UT for taxpayers with turnover up to Rs 20 crore and 0.5% of turnover for those above Rs 20 crore turnover.

Apart from late fees, failing to file GSTR-9 even after a notice can also lead to levy of penalty under section 125 of CGST Act. The penalty can be up to 25% of tax payable.

How to File Error-Free GSTR-9?

Follow these tips for accurate GSTR-9 filing:

  • Download auto-populated GSTR-9 json and reconcile the data with your monthly returns and books
  • Ensure GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B of the whole year are filed before filing GSTR-9
  • Match GSTR-2A inward supplies with purchase register
  • Identify and report any data mismatches in Part V of GSTR-9
  • Ensure HSN-wise summary of goods and services matches with monthly records
  • Double check nil return months to avoid discrepancies
  • Reconcile ITC availed with Form GSTR-2A to report ineligible ITC under Part III
  • Cross-tally interest, late fees, taxes paid with GSTR-3B before filing Part IV
  • Disclose any tax liability under reverse charge in the year of payment if not reported before
  • Seek professional help to avoid omissions and minimize reconciliation errors

Using a comprehensive GST software solution like filingwala.com can help automate reconciliation and simplify GSTR-9 filing. Their user-friendly dashboards allow quick import and matching of all your GST returns and purchase data to generate an audit-ready GSTR-9 within minutes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Is GSTR-9 mandatory if turnover is below Rs 2 crore?

A. No, GSTR-9 is optional for taxpayers with turnover up to Rs 2 crore. However, it is advisable to file for better compliance.

Q. Can I revise GSTR-9 after filing?

A. No, after filing, GSTR-9 cannot be revised. You need to disclose any errors/omissions in next year’s annual return.

Q. Should I file nil GSTR-9 if I have filed nil returns?

A. Yes, even if you have filed nil returns, a NIL GSTR-9 has to be filed for the financial year.

Q. Can I file GSTR-9 directly on the GSTN portal?

A. Yes, GSTR-9 has to be filed online on the GST portal. However, filing through a GST software like filingwala.com makes the entire process quicker and simpler.

Q. Can I edit auto-drafted GSTR-9 json before filing?

A. Yes, you can edit, add or modify the auto-populated figures as required before filing your GSTR-9.

Conclusion

I hope this detailed guide helps you gain clarity on all aspects of GSTR-9 filing, right from due date, applicability, format to reconciliation checks needed.

Using a reliable GST software solution like filingwala.com to accurately import and match your GST data can significantly smoothen your GSTR-9 filing experience. Their automated tools help you identify and fix discrepancies upfront, minimizing errors and future disputes.

So leverage technology and expert help this year to breeze through your annual GST compliance with ease. File a clean GSTR-9 on time and avoid penalties due to non-compliance.

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