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GST returns not filed? The taxman can freeze your bank account
December, 31st 2019

Not filing goods and services tax (GST) returns could cost you your property and money. According to a TOI report, a new set of rules have given the green light to GST authorities as a strategy to ensure better compliance.

With over 1 crore GST-registered entities failing to file return on time, the new set of rules enable GST-authorities to attach your property and banks accounts if despite repeated reminders you fail to file tax returns.

Top officials of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs have been told to go hard on defaulters. The process to nudge the entity and its officials will begin three days ahead of the deadline for filing GSTR-3A of the final returns. The due date for the same is by the 20th of every month.

Post the due date, a system-generated message will be sent to all the defaulters asking. All the authorised signatories of the entity, proprietor of the entity, partners of a firm, directors of companies or the kartas in case of HUFs will also receive the system generated message. If the entity fails to comply, five-days after the due date, an electronic notice will be served. giving it 15 days to furnish the returns.

If the notice elicits no response, tax officials have been told to undertake an assessment of the tax liability after factoring in the available data.

The CBIC, in the three-page standard operating procedure issued on Tuesday has decided to go strong against "defaulters".

The SOP issues states, "For the purpose of assessment of tax liability... the proper officer may take into account the details of outward supplies available in the statement furnished under section 31 (Form GSTR-1), details of supplies auto-populated in FORM GSTR-2A, information available for e-way bills, or any other information available for any other source, including from inspection."

Officials can initiate recovery action, according to the SOP, if the entity fails to respond to the assessment order for 30 days. VAT and service tax carried such provisions but were invoked in extreme cases only.

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