The government prescribes certain compliances to be done for specific persons for the ease of gathering information. One such compliance requirements are filing of Information return. This is more from the administrative point of view for the Government to be used for the exchange of information.
Under Section 150 of the CGST Act, 2017, the government mandates the filing of Information Returns under GST for certain class of persons. Information returns are not tax returns. They are rather tax documents which are used to report certain business transactions.
Applicability of Information Return
As mentioned above, the Information returns under GST are required to be filed by only a certain class of people as defined in the act.
If any person (out of the ones stated below) is responsible for maintaining any of the following, he would be required to file an Information Return under GST:
- Registration records
- Statement of accounts
- Periodic Returns
- Details of tax payment
- Other details of the transaction of goods or services
- Transactions relating to bank account
- Transactions relating to consumption of electricity
- Transactions of purchases
- Transactions of sales
- Exchange of goods or property
- Right or interest in a property
The class of persons obligated to file Information Returns is as follows:
- Any taxable person
- Any local authority / other public body/association
- Any authority of the State Government responsible to collect state-level taxes (SGST)
- Any authority of the Central Government responsible to collect central level taxes (CGST)
- Any income tax authority
- Any banking company
- State Electricity Board or distributor of electricity
- Registrar or Sub-registrar (Under Registration Act)
- Registrar (Under Companies Act)
- Registering authority (Under Motor Vehicles Act)
- Collector (As under Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act)
- Stock exchanges
- Officer of Reserve Bank of India
- Person to whom UIN (Unique Identity Number) is granted
- Any other person recommended by the Government’s council
Time limit to furnish Information Return
The Information Returns are required to file within the designated time limits as per the sub-section (1) and (2) of the act. On certain occasions, it might so happen that the authority finds the return filed as defective.
On such happenings, the authority would intimate the person who has filed the return and ask to rectify the mistake. The rectified return should be filed within 30 days from the date of such intimation.
Also, where a person required to furnish the return hasn’t furnished the return in due time, the authority may serve a notice to the person requiring him to file the return. The notice may mention the return to be filed up to a maximum of 90 days from the date of such notice.
Penalty for non-filing of Information Return
The provisions of the act provide that in the case where a person required to file the Information Return fails to do so within the specified time-limit as per the notice, the person shall be liable to pay a penalty of Rs. 100 for every day for which the default continues.
There is also a cap on the maximum amount payable as the penalty for failure to furnish Information Return. The maximum amount of penalty can’t exceed Rs. 5,000.