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Guide on filing GSTR-4 on GST Portal

Updated on:  

08 min read

GSTR-4 is a simplified return to ease the burden of small businesses opting for composition scheme, filed once in a year from FY 2019-20 onwards. Until then, it was a quarterly return to be filed by 18th of the month succeeding the quarter.

Latest Update

28th May 2021
43rd GST Council meeting took place on 28th May 2021. The Council approved the GST amnesty scheme to be re-introduced, the late fee was rationalised for all taxpayers, especially for small taxpayers and IGST is exempted on import of COVID treating equipment and relief materials up to 31st August 2021.

21st May 2021
43rd GST Council meeting will take place on 28th May 2021 (Friday) at 11 A.M. via video conferencing and will be chaired by Union FM Nirmala Sitharaman.

18th February 2021
Various media sources have stated that the next 43rd/44th GST Council Meeting is set to be held in mid-March 2021.

12th October 2020
The extended 42nd GST council meeting (also referred as 43rd GST Council meet by certain media sources) was held on 12th October 2020 with the following highlights:
1. The meeting ended with no unanimity on the borrowing issue.
2. The levy of compensation cess will continue beyond the 5-year period.
3. The centre will not be able to borrow funds to meet the compensation cess shortfall.
4. It was also clarified in the press briefing that the cess collected July 2022 onwards will not be disbursed to the states.

5th October 2020
At the 1st of the 42nd GST Council meeting, the GST council discussed the pressing compensation cess issue and other matters with regard to ease of return filing and GST rate reduction.

27th August 2020
41st GST Council meeting was held on 27th August 2020 via VC with the key item on agenda being the ways to compensate for the GST revenue shortfall to the states.

12th June 2020
40th GST Council meeting concluded with major announcements made for MSMEs.

GSTR-4 (Annual Return) filing guide

The annual return facility in form GSTR-4 is available from FY 2019-20 since 21st July 2020 onwards on the GST portal.

To know the complete guide on steps to file GSTR-4 (Annual Return) on GST portal, read our article on ‘How to file GSTR-4 (Annual Return) on GST Portal?’

GSTR-4 (Quarterly Return) filing guide

GSTR-4(Quarterly Return) Offline Filing

The GST Portal has the offline process for GSTR-4(Quarterly Return) filing. Online facility of the same is also made available.

GSTR-4 Offline Filing tool can be downloaded from the GST Portal. Login is not required. There are 7 steps of filing-

  1. Downloading & Installation the GSTR4 Offline Tool
  2. Entering details in the GSTR4 Offline Tool
  3. Validating Details
  4. Creating the JSON File
  5. Upload JSON file on GST Portal
  6. Open Downloaded Return File for GSTR4
  7. Submission and Filing of GSTR4

Please refer to the  step-by-step PDF issued by the government for the process of filing GSTR-4 on the GST Portal.

GSTR-4 Offline Utility

GSTR-4 Offline Utility is a macro-based excel where you will input your data. After validation the excel will automatically generate a JSON file which you have to upload on the portal.  

 Step-by-Step PDF Guide

Please go through the government issued PDF for a step-by-step guide on GSTR 4(Quarterly Return)filing in Offline Tool.

Parts of the GSTR-4 Offline Utility

There are 10 tabs in the excel. We will go through them in brief.  

1. Read Me

It provides the introduction to the GSTR4 Offline Excel Tool in brief. It also has the instructions and explanations of each of the items in the subsequent sheets.  

2. Home Tab

This is the main page where you will generate the JSON file after furnishing all details. You are required to enter the following fields-

  • GSTIN
  • Financial Year from the drop-down list
  • Tax Period from the drop-down list

All other information will automatically flow from the other tabs.  

3. 4B(B2B)- Inward Supplies received from a registered supplier (attracting reverse charge)

This tab will include all purchases from registered dealers that attract GST under reverse charge. You are required to enter all details such as invoice number and date, taxable value etc. Items like place of supply and rate can be selected from the drop-down list. Taxes will be automatically calculated by the excel formula.   The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.

4. 4C(B2BUR)- Inward Supplies received from an unregistered supplier

This tab will include all purchases from unregistered dealers. This is similar to the previous tab. You are required to enter all details such as invoice number and date, taxable value etc. Items like place of supply and rate can be selected from the drop-down list. GSTIN of supplier will not be applicable here. You will be required to select type of purchase –inter-state or intra-state. Taxes will be automatically calculated by the excel formula based on the type of sale The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.  

5. 4D(IMPS)- Import of Services

This tab will include import of services. This is similar to the previous tabs. While the previous 2 tabs deal solely with goods, this tab is for services. You are required to enter all details such as invoice number and date, taxable value etc. Items like place of supply and rate can be selected from the drop-down list. GSTIN of supplier will not be applicable here. Taxes will be automatically calculated by the excel. Since it is import of service, only IGST is applicable and there is only 1 column of tax. The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.  

6. 5B(CDNR)- Debit Notes/Credit Notes (for registered)

This tab will have the details of Debit Notes/Credit Notes (issued to registered taxpayers) All debit notes and credit notes issued to registered dealers are furnished in this tab. Both the credit/debit note details and the original invoice details must be mentioned. Taxes will be calculated automatically. The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.

7. 5B(CDNUR)- Debit Notes/Credit Notes (for unregistered)

This tab will have the details of Debit Notes/Credit Notes (issued to unregistered taxpayers) Both the credit/debit note details and the original invoice details must be mentioned. Taxes will be calculated automatically. Debit notes/credit notes issued to both unregistered suppliers and also for import of services will be furnished here. The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.

8. 6(TXOS) Tax on outward supplies made

This is the tab for the sales data. Data has to be given on a consolidated basis instead of detailed invoice basis. The composition dealer must enter his net turnover against his relevant tax rate. Net turnover is calculated from total turnover after adjusting advances and goods return. For example, if he is a manufacturer, he will enter his sales against the 2% rate. Taxes will be calculated automatically. The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.  

9. 8A(AT)- Advance amount paid for reverse charge supplies in the tax period

This tab will contain details of advance amount paid for reverse charge supplies in the tax period. Place of supply, rate, type of supply (inter or intra state) must be selected from the drop-down list along with gross advance value. Taxes will be calculated automatically. The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.

10. 8B(ATADJ)- Advance amount on which tax was paid in earlier period but invoice has been received in the current period

This tab is regarding advances on which tax was paid in earlier period but invoice has been received in the current period, i.e., for normal advances paid on purchases which do not attract reverse charge. This tab is very similar to the previous tab. Place of supply, rate, type of supply (inter or intra state) must be selected from the drop-down list along with gross advance value. Taxes will be calculated automatically. The explanation for the various columns is available in the ‘Read Me’ tab.   Please read our guide on GSTR-4.  

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