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How to file GSTR-9A Offline?

Updated on :  

08 min read.

GSTR-9A is an annual GST return form to be filed by the registered taxpayers who have opted for a composition scheme under GST.

Who can use the offline tool for GSTR-9A?

Taxpayers registered under the composition scheme can download the offline utility of GSTR-9A to fill various details like outward supplies, inward supplies, ITC, etc. in the form. The offline utility is an excel based tool to facilitate the creation of annual returns in Form GSTR-9A. The offline utility helps the taxpayers to prepare the GSTR-9A return offline.

Prerequisites to use the offline tool for GSTR-9A

A taxpayer should have the following tools installed before using GSTR-9A offline utility:

  • An operating system should be Windows 7 or above
  • Microsoft excel 2007 and above

Steps to download the offline tool for GSTR-9A

Follow the below steps to download the offline tool for GSTR-9A:

Step 1: Log in to the GST portal.

Step 2: Navigate to  Downloads > Offline Tools > GSTR-9A Offline Tool and click on the download link appearing on the screen.

gstr-9a offline

Step 3: GSTR-9A offline utility page will be displayed. Click on the downloads hyperlink.

gstr-9a offline

A message will pop up asking ‘Do you want to download the utility?’. Click on ‘Proceed’.  

gstr-9a offline

Step 4: The zipped utility folder will be downloaded. Unzip the downloaded zip file and extract the GSTR_9A_Offline_Utility.xls file. Click on ‘Enable editing’ to edit the file.  

gstr-9a offlline

Then, click on ‘Enable Content’.

gstr-9a offline

Step 5: There are 5 worksheet tabs in GSTR-9A offline utility. They are:

  1. Read Me: Read the instructions and fill the utility accordingly.
  2. Home: Update the basic details like GSTIN, financial year, etc.
  3. Part II: Update the details of outward and inward supplies made during the financial year.
  4. Part III: Update the details of tax paid during the financial year.
  5. Part IV: Update the details of transactions of the previous year as declared in current year returns of April to September or date of filing of annual return of the previous year, whichever is earlier.
  6. Part V: Update details related to demands and refunds.
gstr-9a offline

Step 6: Generate JSON from the GST portal Generate the JSON file for upload using the ‘Generate the JSON file to upload’ button.

gstr-9a offline

Click on the ‘Generate JSON file to download’ button.  

gstr-9a offline

A message will be displayed that ‘Request for a generation has been accepted, kindly wait for 20 minutes’.

gstr-9a offline

After the JSON file is downloaded, click on ‘Click here to download-file 1’ link.

gstr-9a offline

The generated JSON file contains the system computed Form GSTR-9A data based on filed Form GSTR-4/CMP-08. It can be edited in the offline tool. Unzip the downloaded file.

Steps to prepare GSTR-9A using the offline tool

Step 1: Enter details in the offline utility: After downloading the JSON on offline utility, a taxpayer can edit the details in the following tables:

  • Table 6: Update the details of outward supplies made during the financial year.
  • Table 7: Update the details of inward supplies made during the financial year on which the reverse charge mechanism is applicable.
  • Table 8: Update the details of inward supplies made during the financial year.
  • Table 9: Update the details of tax paid during the financial year.
  • Table 10: Inward supplies liable to reverse charge declared through amendments (+) (net of debit notes).  
  • Table 12: Outward supplies reduced through amendments (-) net of credit notes. 
  • Table 13: Inward supplies liable to reverse charge reduced through amendments (-) net of credit notes.
  • Table 14: Payment of differential tax paid due to declaration made in 10,11,12 & 13 above.  
  • Table 15: Particulars of demands and refunds.
  • Table 16: Details of credit reversed and availed.
gstr-9a offline

  Step 2: Validation of errors: Click on the ‘Validate Sheet’ button in each of the tabs after updating details in the above tables. The cells with error will get highlighted in red. A taxpayer can correct the details as mentioned in the yellow description box.

How to upload the generated JSON file of GSTR-9A?

How to upload the generated JSON file of GSTR-9A?

Step 1: Log in to the GST portal.

Step 2: Navigate to Services>Return>Annual return

gstr-9a offline

Step 3: Select the financial year on the ‘File Annual Returns’ page.  

gstr-9a offline

Step 4: Click on prepare offline and then click on the upload section. Click on the ‘Choose File’ button. 

gstr-9a offline

Step 5: Choose the file to be uploaded and click ‘Open’.

gstr-9a offline

Step 6: A message will pop-up confirming successful upload. The GST portal will validate the uploaded data. If there is some error in the uploaded error, the upload history table will report the status as ‘Error Occurred’. 

A taxpayer can rectify the errors and then upload the file again. The error report will contain only those entries which failed validation checks. A taxpayer can view the entries which are successfully validated.   Once the JSON files get uploaded, follow the same steps as mentioned here from Step 4 for the preview of the uploaded file.  

How to fix errors using GSTR-9A offline tool?

(A) Validate Sheet

  1. Use the ‘Validate Sheet’ option on the top right-hand side of the excel tool.
  2. The cells with errors will get highlighted in red. Move your cursor on the highlighted cells to see the yellow description box. A taxpayer can then correct the errors as mentioned in the box.
  3. Most of the errors will get displayed by clicking the ‘Validate Sheet’ button. However, a few errors with a dependency on online connectivity like GSTIN validation will be made at the time of upload of JSON file.

(B) Download Error Report The error report will report entries which failed validation checks while uploading JSON on the GST portal. If the JSON file is processed without error, no need to download the GSTR-9A JSON file. 

Frequently Asked Questions on GSTR-9A Offline tool

What are the features of GSTR-9A offline utility?

GSTR-9A has the following features:

  • A taxpayer can update the details of Table 6 to Table 16 offline.
  • Validation check option is available in the offline utility, thus reducing the chances of errors on upload to the GST portal.

No, a taxpayer needs to login to the GST portal to file GSTR-9A.

Is the GSTR-9A offline utility mobile compatible?

No, it can be used only on desktops/laptops.

What things need to be kept in mind while making entries in utility?
  • Enter a valid GSTIN. Verify the same by going home>search>taxpayer>search GSTIN/UIN to make sure that the registration is active.
  • A taxpayer can use copy/paste functionalities but cannot use cut/paste functionalities for entering data in the utility.
  • A taxpayer can change the file name and location of the generated JSON file, but should not change the extension of the generated JSON file.
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