It has been more than 6 months now since Indian GST law has mandated e-invoice for businesses with turnover of more than 500 crores selling goods to other businesses i.e. B2B transactions.
Recently w.e.f. 1st April 2021, the government has further made e-invoicing mandatory for businesses with turnover above 50 crores and it seems that very soon it would also be made applicable for much more smaller businesses.
This write-up series would help the businesses to proactively understand and address the practical business error scenarios which would further help them to adapt to this law requirement comfortably.
Note: The discussion is based on the API mode of integration with real-time IRN generation process however the concept can be applied as a standard for any mode of integration.
Meaning of Duplicate IRN (error code 2150)
This error is sent by the e-invoice portal when the same invoice number (for which IRN is already generated) is received more than once by the portal.
Duplicate IRN can have the below 2 scenarios required to be dealt with:
This is the most common scenario observed where even after the IRN is received by the ERP/POS systems, the same transaction is again sent to the e-invoice portal leading to Duplicate IRN error message.
- Save the IRN received against the transaction in ERP system
- Flag the transaction as 'IRN Received'
- Configure the system in such a manner, that the transaction flagged as 'IRN Received' is not sent again to e-invoice portal for IRN generation
Scenario 2: Practical scenario in Retail sector on real time POS channels
Imagine you are at some hyper-mart store with your trolley ready to be billed. Without the payment and IRN generation, the invoice would not get printed from the POS terminal. The cashier triggered the transaction for getting the IRN but generation failed and the error code 2150 i.e. Duplicate IRN is received.
In such a scenario, the cashier retries the request and again finds the same message of Duplicate IRN on the screen.
Query: How is this possible when the IRN is not received by the system even once but still error of Duplicate IRN is received from the e-invoice portal?
Possible Reasons can be network issues between the e-invoice portal and the ERP/POS system which might lead to a situation where the IRN got generated at the e-invoice portal but due to some network reason, could not be received by the ERP/POS terminal, thereby leading to error code 2150 i.e. Duplicate IRN.
This might lead to loss of sales as the invoice will not get generated without the IRN from the system.
Use "GET IRN" API:
The government has released the GET IRN API through which the original IRN details can be fetched from the e-invoice portal in case of any failure to receive the same.
Automation of GET IRN API
This automation would increase efficiency without any manual intervention required. Once the Duplicate IRN message with error code 2150 is received, the system can automatically trigger the GET IRN API to fetch the original IRN along with other details.
This would save time which further would avoid loss of sales leading to enhanced customer experience.
Let's contribute and make the new regime easily adaptable for the MSME's and the small businesses in India.
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