CBIC clarifies Various Measures announced by Government for providing Relief to Taxpayers: COVID-19

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1. The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) on Thursday issued the clarification in respect of various measures announced by the Government for providing relief to the taxpayers in view of the spread of the Novel Corona Virus (COVID-19).

2. The Board issued Circular No. 136/06/2020-GST, dated April 3, 2020, on the subject issue clarifying various issues relating to the measures announced by the Government providing relief to the taxpayers.

3. The GST Council, in its 40th meeting held on June 12, 2020, recommended further relief to the taxpayers:-

a) Firstly, Notification No.51/2020- Central Tax, dated June 24, 2020, sought to provide relief to taxpayers by reducing the rate of interest from 18% per annum to 9% per annum for a specified period.

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b) Secondly, Notification No.52/2020- Central Tax, dated June 24, 2020, sought to provide relief to taxpayers by a conditional waiver of late fee for delay in furnishing FORM GSTR-3B for a specified period.

c) Thirdly, Notification No.53/2020- Central Tax, dated June 24, 2020, sought to provide relief to taxpayers by the conditional waiver of late fee for delay in furnishing FORM GSTR-1 for a specified period.

3. The Board in order to ensure uniformity in the implementation of the provisions of the law across the field formations, issued clarification relating to the manner of calculation of interest for taxpayers having aggregate turnover above Rs. 5 Crore; manner of calculation of interest for taxpayers having aggregate turnover below Rs. 5 Crore and manner of calculation of the late fee.

“A lower rate of interest of NIL for first 15 days after the due date of filing return in FORM GSTR-3B and @ 9% thereafter till 24.06.2020 is notified. After the specified date, the normal rate of interest i.e. 18% per annum shall be charged for any further period of delay in furnishing the returns,” the circular clarified in relation to the manner of calculation of interest for taxpayers having aggregate turnover above Rs. 5 Crore.

“The notification, thus, provides a NIL rate of interest till specified dates and after the specified dates lower rate of 9% would apply till 30th September 2020. After 30th September 2020, the normal rate of interest i.e. 18% per annum shall be charged for any further period of delay in furnishing of the returns,” the circular clarified in relation to the manner of calculation of interest for taxpayers having aggregate turnover below Rs. 5 Crore.

“In case the returns in FORM GSTR- 3B for the said months are not furnished on or before the dates specified in the said notification, then the late fee shall be payable from the due date of return, till the date on which the return is filed,” the circular clarified in relation to the manner of calculation of the late fee.

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