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Update on Indirect Tax - Service Tax, Excise and GST for the month of Feb 2015

TARUN KUMAR GUPTA 
on 05 February 2015

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In addition to Service Tax and Excise, we have started a new section on GST. Hope this will be useful to you.

A. Service Tax

1. Service Tax payment for the month of January, 2015 is due for payment on 6th February, 2015 for assesses excluding Individual, Proprietary Firm, Partnership Firm or LLP. It is now mandatory for all assesses w.e.f. October 1, 2014, to pay their dues through internet banking (e-payment) (In case the assessee wants to use any mode other than internet banking, a specific permission may be taken from the Assistant Commissioner/ Deputy Commissioner).

2. ST 3 Return – Half Yearly Service Tax Return (ST-3) for the period April – September 2014 was due on October 25th, 2014. The Excel Utility can be downloaded from www.aces.gov.in/ downloads. The Government had extended the date for filing of returns till November 14, 2014 (Order No.2/2014-ST, Dated 24-10-2014). In case return has not been filed till date, it is advisable to file the same as early as possible, with applicable late fee.

3. VCES 3 – Assessees who had availed the VCES scheme and have done their payments in full, need to apply to the Department for VCES 3 (Discharge Certificate) giving copy of VCES 2 and all Challans. The Department has started issuing VCES 3 for assessees who have applied.

4. The old service specific codes have been restored thus assesses are required to classify the services rendered by them as per the new notification and pay accordingly in the respective accounting codes. 

5. Please note that in case you are liable to pay Service Tax (in case of services under reverse charge), you are not allowed to set it off against available balance of CENVAT credit. You need to pay the same. You can however avail CENVAT credit of this payment as in normal cases.

6. Amendment in the registration certificate is mandatory to reflect the complete set of services provided/ availed under reverse charge as per the new accounting codes.

7. CENVAT can now be availed only for the last 6 months in the normal case, other than cases of re-credit, as clarified by the Government. Thus you are advised to avail and utilise CENVAT and not keep it accumulated beyond 6 months, as that would become ineligible.

8. Rate of Interest – Interest rates have been revised w.e.f. 1-10-14 to 18% for delay till 6 months, 24% for delay from 6 months to 12 months and 30% for delay beyond 1 year. 3% small service provider’s benefit will be available.

B. Central Excise

1. Excise payment for the month of January, 2015 is due for payment on 6th February, 2015 for assesses excluding SSIs. It is now mandatory for all assesses w.e.f. October 1, 2014, to pay their dues through internet banking (e-payment) (In case the assessee wants to use any mode other than internet banking, a specific permission may be taken from the Assistant Commissioner/ Deputy Commissioner).

2. Excise Returns – Last date for filing of ER 1, ER 2 and ER 6 is 10th February, 2015.

3. CENVAT can now be availed only for the last 6 months in the normal case, other than cases of re-credit, as clarified by the Government. Thus you are advised to avail and utilise CENVAT and not keep it accumulated beyond 6 months, as that would become ineligible.

C. Goods & Services Tax (GST)

1. GST Bill introduced in Lok Sabha – The Constitution Amendment Bill on GST was introduced by the Hon’ble Finance Minister in the Lok Sabha on Friday, 19th December, 2014. It is expected that in this Budget, the Government will take further steps to ensure implementation of GST w.e.f. April 2016.

2. Preparatory exercise - Assessees are advised to do their homework and start mapping their input taxes, processes and identify suppliers who are not registered and take other measures so that the ground work is kept ready by the time GST is implemented.

D. Major Amendments in January 2015

Service Tax

1. Good Governance Administration - Initiatives towards Good Governance - Simplification of Procedure to Reduce Interface between Tax Officials and Tax Payers Instruction [F.No.296/267/2014-Cx.9], Dated 7-1-2015 - It has been decided that one day of the week, viz., Wednesday (9 AM to 1 PM) may be designated as Taxpayers' day wherein Heads of all offices in the field will meet the taxpayers without any prior appointment in order to address their grievances expeditiously.

2.  Section 2(B) of The Central Excise Act, 1944, read with Section 65B(55) of the Finance Act, 1994 - Central Excise Officer - Appointment Of Chief Commissioners Of Service Tax, Principal Commissioners Of Service Tax, Commissioners Of Service Tax, Commissioners Of Service Tax (Audit), Commissioners Of Central Excise (Audit), Commissioners Large Taxpayers Unit, Commissioners Of Large Taxpayer Unit (Audit), Commissioner Of Central Excise (Appeals) and Commissioners Of Service Tax (Appeals) - Amendment In Notification No. 20/2014-St, Dated 16-9-2014 (Notification No.1/2015-St, Dated 20-1-2015) – The territorial jurisdiction of the following officers has been changed Principal Commissioner of Service Tax - I, Bangalore, Principal Commissioner of Service Tax – II, Bangalore, Principal Commissioner of Service Tax-I, Delhi, Commissioner of Service Tax-III, Delhi, Principal Commissioner of Service Tax- I, Mumbai, Commissioner of Service Tax -VI, Mumbai, Commissioner of Service Tax -VII, Mumbai and Principal Commissioner of Service Tax, Noida.

3. Jurisdiction Of Principal Chief Commissioners Of Central Excise, Chief Commissioners Of Central Excise, Principal Commissioners Of Central Excise, Commissioners Of Central Excise, Commissioners Of Central Excise (Appeals) Or Commissioners Of Central Excise (Audit) - Amendment In Notification No. 27/2014-C.E. (N.T.), Dated 16-9-2014 (Notification No. 01/2015-Central Excise (N.T.), Dated 20-1-2015)

4. Section 14 of the Central Excise Act, 1944 - Power To Summon Persons To Give Evidence And Produce Documents In Inquiries Under This Act - Instructions For Issue Of Summons In Central Excise And Service Tax Matters (Instruction [F.No. 207/07/2014-Cx-6], Dated 20-1-2015) – Instructions have been issued to issue Summons only in extreme cases and not as a regular feature

Central Excise

1. Clarification on Mandatory Pre-Deposit of Duty or Penalty for Filing Appeal (Circular No.993/17/2014-CX, Dated 5-1-2015) – Format to be maintained in the Review Cell in each Commissionerate w.r.t. pre-deposit so as to facilitate refund in such cases

2. Section 5A of the Central Excise Act, 1944 - Power to Grant Exemption from Duty of Excise - Exemption to Specified Excisable Goods - Amendment in Notification No.12/2012-C.E., Dated 17-3-2012 (Notification No.2/2015-CE, Dated 7-1-2015) - In the said notification, in the opening paragraph, the third proviso shall be omitted

3. Good Governance Administration - Initiatives towards Good Governance - Simplification of Procedure to Reduce Interface between Tax Officials and Tax Payers Instruction [F.No.296/267/2014-Cx.9], Dated 7-1-2015 - It has been decided that one day of the week, viz., Wednesday (9 AM to 1 PM) may be designated as Taxpayers' day wherein Heads of all offices in the field will meet the taxpayers without any prior appointment in order to address their grievances expeditiously.

4.   Section 2(B) of The Central Excise Act, 1944, read with Section 65B(55) of the Finance Act, 1994 - Central Excise Officer - Appointment Of Chief Commissioners Of Service Tax, Principal Commissioners Of Service Tax, Commissioners Of Service Tax, Commissioners Of Service Tax (Audit), Commissioners Of Central Excise (Audit), Commissioners Large Taxpayers Unit, Commissioners Of Large Taxpayer Unit (Audit), Commissioner Of Central Excise (Appeals) and Commissioners Of Service Tax (Appeals) - Amendment In Notification No. 20/2014-St, Dated 16-9-2014 (Notification No.1/2015-St, Dated 20-1-2015) – The territorial jurisdiction of the following officers has been changed Principal Commissioner of Service Tax - I, Bangalore, Principal Commissioner of Service Tax – II, Bangalore, Principal Commissioner of Service Tax-I, Delhi, Commissioner of Service Tax-III, Delhi, Principal Commissioner of Service Tax- I, Mumbai, Commissioner of Service Tax -VI, Mumbai, Commissioner of Service Tax -VII, Mumbai and Principal Commissioner of Service Tax, Noida.

5. Jurisdiction Of Principal Chief Commissioners Of Central Excise, Chief Commissioners Of Central Excise, Principal Commissioners Of Central Excise, Commissioners Of Central Excise, Commissioners Of Central Excise (Appeals) Or Commissioners Of Central Excise (Audit) - Amendment In Notification No. 27/2014-C.E. (N.T.), Dated 16-9-2014 (Notification No. 01/2015-Central Excise (N.T.), Dated 20-1-2015)

6. Section 14 of the Central Excise Act, 1944 - Power To Summon Persons To Give Evidence And Produce Documents In Inquiries Under This Act - Instructions For Issue Of Summons In Central Excise And Service Tax Matters (Instruction [F.No. 207/07/2014-Cx-6], Dated 20-1-2015) – Instructions have been issued to issue Summons only in extreme cases and not as a regular feature

This is for your kind information.

Best Regards

CA. Tarun Kr. Gupta
FCA, FCS, PGDBM, B.Com (Hons.)


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