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This article is a part of a series of important forms required to be filed under GST. The procedure laid down for applying refund under GST law is different under different scenarios. In this topic, we shall focus on how to apply for the refund of taxes and interests paid in excess or the accumulated input tax credit in electronic credit ledger where the output tax liability is nil or balance in electronic cash ledger due to excess cash payment by filing RFD-01(online) or RFD-01A(Manually).

Latest Updates on GST Refund

Update as on 1st May 2021

Where the time limit to pass orders for rejecting any refund claim fully or partly falls between 15th April 2021 and 30th May 2021, it is extended. The extended time limit shall be later of two dates:

  1. 15 days after reply to notice
  2. 31st May 2021

Update as on 27th June 2020

A full or part of the amount applied for refund may have been rejected via a notice issued by the authority. After completing the due proceedings, a final order must be issued within 60 days from the date of receipt of the refund application.

In case this time limit is expiring between 20th March to 30th August 2020, the last date to issue order shall be extended to the later of following dates:

  • 15 days from the date of receiving a reply from the applicant towards the notice, or
  • 31st August 2020

Update as on 3rd April 2020

The time limit for completion or compliance has been extended to 30th June 2020, where the time limit/time limit/ date of expiry falls between the period from 20th March 2020 to 29th June 2020. It includes cases where the time limit to apply for GST refund in RFD-01 expires between 20th March 2020 and 29th June 2020.

Update as in Sept 2019

RFD-01 (complete online refund processing functionality) is implemented from 26th September 2019.

1.What are RFD-01 and RFD-01A & Steps to apply for GST refund?

Any taxpayer can file for refund in Form RFD-01/ RFD-01A. Refund will be issued only when refund exceeds Rs. 1,000 RFD-01 is an application for online processing of refund under GST. It is to to be e-filed on the GST portal to claim the refund of: taxes, cess and interest paid in case of zero-rated supplies balance of excess cash paid into the electronic cash ledger unutilised Input tax credit accumulated in your Electronic Credit Ledger due to Inverted duty structure. Whereas, RFD-01A is a replica of RFD-01 introduced as a temporary solution till such time the online facility is enabled for claims of refund. RFD-01A is the application form for refund form under GST for manual processing, notified for certain cases of Refund. Steps:
  • Login to GST portal.
  • Select the Refund tab-> Application for Refund Option.
  • Select the type of refund and Fill the necessary details and submit. ARN number gets generated.
  • Later take a print out along with the ARN number mentioned thereon.
  • Submit this along with the applicable annexures to the respective Jurisdictional GST officer.
The Officer can be Central tax authority or State/UT tax Authority as may be notified for processing of refund shall be intimated through the Acknowledgement in RFD-02

2.Who should file RFD-01/01A?

In case of deemed exports, either the recipient or the supplier can make an application for refund of taxes paid. For a particular invoice of deemed exports, both the supplier and the recipient cannot apply to claim refund. Suppose the supplier applies for refund, then a declaration has to be taken from the recipient that he is not claiming the refund against that supply.

3.Types of refunds where RFD-01/01A is applicable

RFD-01 can be applied for the following types of refund as depicted in the infographic below:   Clarification on the format of Form GST RFD-01   The following types of refunds under GST are currently being manually processed:
  1. IGST paid on zero-rated supplies
  2. ITC on exports under letter of undertaking or bond
  3. Claims in case of deemed exports
  4. Refund claims on account of inverted duty structure
  5. Excess balance in Electronic cash ledger
Hence, file RFD-01A in the place of RFD-01 for the above cases till such time until further notified. Alternatively, The claim of excess balance in Electronic Cash ledger can also be made in the monthly returns that is filed by taxpayer. For instance, then GSTR-3 , GSTR-4 or GSTR-7 as the case may be. Till such time GSTR-3 is brought into effect, file RFD-01A here.

4.Cases where RFD-01/01A is not applicable

RFD-01/01A has to be filed for all cases of refund claims except the below mentioned:
  1. Export of goods involving payment of export duty
  2. Exports of goods/ services where IGST is paid and shipping bill is by default considered the application for refund.
  3. Cases where the supplier avails the drawback scheme of the CGST/SGST/IGST paid on the supplies
  4. UN or embassies and certain persons notified
  5. Casual taxable persons / non-resident taxable persons

5.Prerequisites for applying for refund

In case of applying refund of tax paid or the accumulated ITC without payment of output tax in case of zero-rated supplies and deemed exports, the applicant should have filed the GST returns in GSTR-1 of the month for which the claim is made and GSTR-3B of the previous month. Care is to be taken to fill up GSTR-1 for the applicable tables at 6A for exports, 6B for Supplies made to SEZ units/ SEZ developer and 6C for Deemed exports. Also, GSTR-3B has to be filled up at Table 3.1(b) and filed in line with the GSTR-1. Any mismatch found between the returns shall lead to delay in processing of refund. The applicant must have the list of invoices in hand against which the refund is claimed. A Certificate by a Chartered Accountant/ Cost accountant needs to be submitted along in certain cases.

6.Time limit and Frequency of filing RFD-01/RFD-01A

The refund claim has to be made within two years from the relevant date in RFD-01/ RFD-01A. The RFD-01A has to be filed on monthly basis for the following cases: 1. Refund claims in case of Zero-rated supplies 2. Refund claims in case of Inverted Duty Structure 3. Refund claims in case of Deemed Exports 4. Refund of excess balance in Electronic Cash ledger RFD-01A can be filed Quarterly instead of Monthly only in case where the taxpayer has turnover below Rs. 1.5 crores and has opted to file Quarterly returns. In case of supply of goods to SEZ units or SEZ developer, a supplier has to file this form once the receipt of goods is confirmed by an authentication from the specified officer of that zone. In case of supply of services to SEZ units or SEZ developer, a supplier has to file this form once the evidence of receipt of service is confirmed by authentication from the specified officer of that zone.

7.Format of Refund forms RFD-01 and RFD-01A

The format of RFD-01 can be broken down into following parts:
  1. Basic Form (Sl. No. 1-10 of the form)
  2. Declarations and Verification
  3. Annexure-1
  4. Annexure-2
Each part is explained as follows: 1. Basic Form : (1) The GSTIN/ Temporary ID allotted (2) Legal name (3) Trade name if any (4) Address of principal place of business (5) Tax period for which the claim of refund is made if applicable, (6) Mention the amount of IGST, CGST and SGST, Interest or cess if any (7) Select the Grounds for the claim of refund as per the list given. (8) Details of Bank account into which you want the refund to be credited    wherever applicable- This field is auto-populated from Registration Data.    So, if you want to alter the Bank account, then make necessary changes in    Registration Data and then apply for the refund. (9) Select ‘Yes’ if the Documentary evidence required to be submitted in Annexure 1 for the reason selected at (7). Else select ‘No’ The Points at 1, 2, 3, 4 are auto-populated on the GST portal. (10) Verification: the Authorised person has to sign this in all cases confirming the correctness of information and declarations given. Below is the view of RFD-01: rfd-01 rfd-01 RFD-01 part H2 The format for RFD-01A remains same except that the grounds of refund covered are limited here and the Bank details and self-declaration at points (8) and (9) are not present in the form. The following Grounds of refund that are not covered while filing through RFD-01A: a) On account of an Assessment order b) Tax paid on supply not provided and for which the invoice is not issued c) Tax paid on Intra State supply which is subsequently held to be Inter-State supply and vice-versa d) Refund of Excess tax paid   2. Declarations and Verification: Some Declarations have to be made for certain types of refund claims made by taxpayer. The declarations are required to assert the fact that the tax burden is upon the claimant of refund and no other person can claim. Click here to know more about what Declarations are required 3. Annexure-1 : Different Declarations in Statements as documentary evidences have to be made or submitted under different types of refund claims. There are total 11 statements prescribed for different types of refund application in RFD-01. The Statements in 1, 1A, 3, 5A and 5B only are applicable in case of filing RFD-01A, depending on type of refund claim Note that the Documentary evidences shall not be required to be submitted if the amount of refund claimed is falling below Rs. 2 lakhs. Instead, a self-declaration that the ITC benefit is not claimed by the recipient of goods or services is sufficient. To know more about the statements that is applicable for a particular refund type: Visit our page on Declaration and Annexures to be submitted with the refund application 4. Annexure-2 : A Certificate issued by Chartered Accountant/ Cost Accountant needs to be annexed along with the Refund application in RFD-01/RFD-01A. To know more about the Certificate that is required: Visit our page on Declaration and Annexures to be submitted with the refund application

8.Calculation of the Refund Amount

Amount of Refund is usually the tax, interest or cess if any that is paid as per the Tax invoice in most of the cases. Where the invoice details are amended (including export), refund shall be allowed as per the calculation based on amended value. In case of refund of ITC accumulated, two formulae has been prescribed. Only proportionate amount of accumulated ITC can be claimed that commensurates the value of turnover related to zero-rated supplies/ inverted rated supply to the total turnover earned by the taxpayer for the period referred. (1) Where zero-rated supplies are made without Tax payment by executing a Letter of undertaking/Bond: Formula to calculate the Refund amount of ITC: Net ITC x [( Turnover of zero-rated supply of Goods + Turnover of zero-rated supply of Services)/ Adjusted Total Turnover] (for the relevant period) Where,
  • Net ITC : Input tax credit availed on inputs and inputs services during relevant period
  • Turnover of zero-rated supply of Goods : Value of supply of Goods during relevant period made without tax payment by executing bond/ letter of undertaking for the relevant period
  • Turnover of zero-rated supply of Services : Value of supply of Services during relevant period made without tax payment by executing bond/ letter of undertaking
In case of  services that are zero-rated supplies, turnover includes the advance received in prior period for which services are now provided and reduced by advance received for which services are yet to be provided for the relevant period
  • Adjusted total turnover :Total Turnover in a State/Union territory excluding value exempt supplies for the relevant period
  • Relevant period: period for which the claim of refund is made/ filed. It differs for each claim of refund.
(2) Where there is inverted duty structure i.e The rate of tax on Inward supplies exceed the Outward supplies: Formula to calculate the Maximum Refund amount of ITC: [Net ITC x (Turnover of inverted rated supply of Goods/ Adjusted Total Turnover)]- Output Tax Payable on Inverted rated supply of Goods (for the relevant period) Where,
  • Net ITC : Input tax credit availed on inputs used in the supply of inverted rated goods during relevant period
  • Turnover of inverted rated supply of goods : Turnover for that Supply of Goods that fall under the Inverted rated category.
  • Adjusted total turnover :Total Turnover in a State/Union territory excluding value exempt supplies for the relevant period
  • Output tax payable on the inverted rated supply of goods : Tax liability for the relevant period payable on the inverted rated supply of goods.

9.What is RFD-01B?

RFD-01B also known as ‘Refund order details’ is a summary of Refund order passed after the entire process of refund is completed.

10.Follow-up after filing the refund application

Once the application is submitted in RFD-01/RFD-01A, then a debit entry to the extent of refund amount applied shall be made automatically in the Electronic Credit Ledger of the claimant. Note the Debit reference number for future use. Within 15 days of receipt, the GST officer will check the application whether for its completeness in all aspects and intimate the claimant in RFD-03 if anything was missed out  to be declared or annexed, requesting for a fresh application. Exception : In case of refund claim of balance in Electronic cash ledger the scrutiny will not apply On successfully filing the application for refund, an acknowledgement in RFD-02 shall be made available on GST portal indicating the Application reference number (ARN), time period of the refund claim and date of filing RFD-01/RFD-01A. If RFD-01A was filed, then the RFD-02 shall be sent out manually by Jurisdictional GST officer referred to in the RFD-02. The GST officer has 60 days from the date of receipt of RFD-02 on filing refund application complete in all respects, to pass the order of sanction of refund claim. Who will be my GST officer ? The GST officer assigned for refund is mentioned on your RFD-02. Note that the refund processing of all taxes ( IGST, CGST and SGST/UTGST) can be done by the Central /State tax authority. But the Payment of refund will be done by the respective Central Tax authority for IGST/SGST and State Tax authority for SGST/UTGST. For this purpose, the GST officer who issued refund order may communicate with the respective tax authorities of State/UT to initiate Payment, within seven working days of issuing order.  

For further Reading and Understanding, checkout :

Processing of refund and acknowledgement Final Order Passed for Sanction of Refund

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