A provision was recently introduced in the Indian Tax Laws (ITL) which required a nonresident (NR) taxpayer to provide such other documents and information, as may be prescribed, in addition to obtaining a certificate of it being a resident of a country viz., a Tax Residency Certificate (TRC). This was required for the taxpayer to be entitled to claim relief under the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) that India would have entered into with such country or territory. Pursuant to the above, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has issued Notification No. 57 of 2013 dated 1 August 2013 (Notification) prescribing the information to be provided. This Notification is deemed to have come into force from 1 April 2013. This Tax Alert summarizes the key contents of the Notification.
The information sought under the Notification, to a large extent, is comparable with the particulars which were required to be included in the TRC under the erstwhile provision before the FA 2013 amendment. On account of the FA 2013 amendment, the condition of the prescribed particulars to be a part of the TRC was omitted and required a taxpayer to provide such other documents and information, as may be prescribed. The Notification requires self-provision of details as part of self-declaration only to the extent that the same are not part of the TRC procured. The Notification additionally requires the taxpayer to keep and maintain such documents as are necessary to substantiate the information provided. Taxpayers seeking to claim relief under a DTAA would need to comply with the requirements of the Notification. The requirement of procuring the TRC and providing the prescribed documents and information apply from tax year 2012-13 while the Notification has been made effective from 1 April 2013 (i.e., the first day of assessment year 2013-14 relevant to tax year 2012-13). Issues could arise as to the date from which the compliance would be warranted in terms of the Notification, although, in the context of the provisions, compliance, effective from tax year 2012-13, appears to be in line with legislative intent and is also advisable.