The government has waived off the penalty for delayed filing of initial returns under goods and services tax (GST) for August and September, giving a major relief for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), which are the most affected by the hasty implementation of goods and services tax (GST) GSTR-3B.
Not just that, those who have paid the late fee will be credited it back.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced this on Twitter.
Businesses have not been able to file returns due to a myriad of reasons including slowing down of the information technology (IT) backbone, GST Network (GSTN). A late fee was charged, which was in most cases more than the company’s tax liability, according to a report in MoneyControl.
The government had earlier waived late fee for delayed filing of the maiden returns for the month of July under the GST regime.
Businesses have been demanding that the government waives penalty for delayed filing of 3B returns.
As per the data, 55.87 lakh GSTR-3B returns were filed for July, 51.37 lakh for August and over 42 lakh for September. Preliminary returns GSTR-3B for a month is filed on the 20th day of the next month after paying due taxes.
As per the data with the GST Network (GSTN), a huge chunk of businesses file their returns after the expiry of the due date.
While only 33.98 lakh July returns were filed till the due date, the number has now gone up to 55.87 lakh. Similarly for August 28.46 lakh returns were filed till the last date, but the figure went up to 51.37 lakh later.
Also for September while 39.4 lakh returns were filed by the due date, the number is rising and was over 42 lakh till Monday.
The GST law provides for a nominal fee of Rs 100 per day on Central GST and an equivalent amount on State GST in case of late filing of returns and payment of taxes.
“The waiver of late fee on delay in filing GSTR 3B is a welcome step from the Finance Minister. Given that GST is a new law and tax payers are still getting used to it coupled with GSTN related issues, this waiver was clearly warranted.