GST Filing

GST or Goods and Services Tax, replaced the numerous different taxes which were levied by Central and State governments on different products or services. While it was enforced in 2017, the GST Act was passed in the year 2019.

This taxation system intends to streamline the numerous taxes levied on products, making it simple for the taxpayers, their collectors, etc. Additionally, it also makes tax filing easy since taxpayers have to file for just one tax.

What is GST Return and GST Return Filing

A GST Return is a legal document persisting GST invoices, receipts, payments, etc., of a certain period. It is a collection of all the details of income, sales, expenses, and purchases of a GST-registered taxpayer.

The main parts of a GST return include-

  • Purchases
  • Sales
  • Output GST (on sales)
  • Input tax credit (GST paid on purchases)

All businesses registered under the Goods and Service Tax (GST) are liable to file GST returns monthly, quarterly, and annually on the basis of the business. While filing the GST return, it is mandatory to provide the respective details about the sales or purchases of the goods and services together with the amount of tax that is collected and paid.

For filing the GST returns, one has to file 4 forms that may include the returns for the purchases made, returns for the supplies, monthly/annual returns, etc.

The government has made GST return filing in India compulsory for all such entities that carry a legit GST registration.

Online GST Filing Process

GST can be filed online using the software provided by the Goods and Services Tax Network. Below are the steps required to file GST online.

  1. Navigate to the official GST portal.
  2. Login using the state code and Permanent Account Number, a 15-digit GST identification number will be issued after data verification.
  3. Uploading the invoices will generate a unique invoice reference number, after which a taxpayer will be able to file outward and inward returns, as well as cumulative monthly returns.
  4. After the successful filing of the same, taxpayers will be liable to file outward supply returns in GSTR-1 Form. They will have to submit the relevant information before the 10th of the subsequent month. Details of the outward supplies furnished by the supplier will be available in the GSTR-2A form.
  5. Next, taxpayers will have to submit details of inward supplies of all taxable goods and services in From GSTR-2.

Types of GST Returns and GST Return Filing Due Dates

There are quite a few types of GST filing which have their specific forms. These forms are listed below in the chart with the due dates for filing the GST returns-

Form Name Applicable Entrepreneurs GST Filing Dates
GSTR-1 Taxable suppliers to file outward supplies. 10th of next month
GSTR-2 Taxable recipients to file inward supplies to claim tax credit. 15th of next month
GSTR-3 Taxable individuals file monthly returns based on finalisation of outward and inward supplies along with tax amount payment. 20th of next month
GSTR-4 Composition suppliers to file quarterly returns. 18th of next month
GSTR-5 NRIs who are taxable. 20th of next month
GSTR-6 Input service distributor to file for return. 13th of next month
GSTR-7 Authorities conducting TDs to file return. 10th of next month
GSTR-8 Tax collectors and e-commerce operators to file supply details and tax collection detail. 10th of next month
GSTR-9 Taxable individuals to file return. 31st December of next year
GSTR-10 Taxable individuals with cancelled registration to file final return. Within 3 months of cancellation of order
GSTR-11 Individuals with UIN refund claims to file inward supply detail. 28th of the month following the month for a statement was filed

While the table above explains who the forms for GST e-filing are meant for, along with their submission date, it is also important to know the details to be filled in the form.

  • GSTR-1

Suppliers must validate the auto-generated purchase information of their outward supply of goods and services. The form contains the following details.

  • Name of business, period for which tax is being filed, and GST identification number (GSTIN).
  • Invoices and tax collection form previous month.
  • Advances received in favour of supplies.
  • Revision in previous month’s sales invoices.
  • GSTR-2

Taxable recipients have to provide the following detail in this form during their GST filing.

  • Name of business, period for which tax is being filed, and GSTIN.
  • Invoices and collected tax in the previous month.
  • Advances received for order to be delivered in the future.
  • Revision of previous month’s sales and invoices.
  • GSTR-3

Taxpayers filing this form already have their details electronically updated along with forms GSTR-1 and 2. Taxpayers must check and verify the above forms as and when necessary, and also provide the details underneath.

  • Input tax credit, liability, and cash ledger details.
  • CGST, SGST and IGST tax payment details.
  • Excess payment repay claim or credit request.
  • GSTR-4

Businesses with a turnover up to Rs.75 lakh can opt for Composition Scheme and go for GST filing with GSTR-4 form. They pay tax at fixed rates based on their business type. While they do not have a tax credit facility, they must also provide the following details.

  • Total value of supply during return period.
  • Tax payment details.
  • Purchase information like invoices.
  • GSTR-5

NRIs must provide the following information while filing this form.

  • Taxpayer’s name and address accompanied with return period and GSTIN.
  • Details of both outgoing and incoming supplies.
  • Import details accompanied with amendments of previous returns.
  • Service importing details along with amendments in the previous service.
  • Refunds from cash ledger, credit and debit details, closing stock, etc.
  • GSTR-6

Input Service Distributors must provide the following details when they are completing their GST filing process. Some details are already electronically updated via forms GSTR-1 and 5.

  • Taxpayer’s name and address detail, return period, and GSTIN.
  • Input credit distribution details.
  • Details on the supplies received from registered suppliers.
  • Input credit amount in their present tax period.
  • Input credit receiver detail.
  • Credit and debit note details.
  • Tax credit that has been received, reverted, and distributed under CGST, SGST, and IGST.
  • GSTR-7

Taxpayers who have deducted tax at source must provide the following details in their form. The TDS liability is generated automatically. The Electronic Cash Ledger refunds will be auto-generated.

  • Address details of taxpayers to accompany their name and GSTIN along with the return period.
  • TDS amount, contract detail, and necessary amendments.
  • Late filing fee and interest.
  • GSTR-8

E-commerce operators must provide the following details in their GST filing with form GSTR-8.

  • Personal details like name and address accompanied with return period and GSTIN.
  • Supply details of payments to registered individuals and necessary amendments to the previous tax payments.
  • Supply details to unregistered individuals.
  • TDS details.
  • Late filing details and delayed payment interest, accompanied by auto-populated tax liability.
  • GSTR-9

Filed by normal taxpayers, it contains both income and expenditure details. It is compiled and assorted with monthly returns. Filing this must accompany audited copies of annual accounts, and taxpayers can amend the previous return filings if necessary.

  • GSTR-10

To be filed on cancellation of GST, taxpayers must provide the following details while their GST filing with this form.

  • ARN or Application Reference Number.
  • Cancellation order ID.
  • Cancellation order date.
  • Closing stock details and payable tax.
  • GSTR-11

Every individual registered under GST with their UIN (Unique Identity Number) must file this form. This is used to claim a refund of excess taxes paid in inward supplies.

  • UIN should be accompanied by the return period and name of the government body.
  • Auto-generated inward supplies from suppliers who are registered under GST.


GSTN, or Goods and Services Tax Network, is an online portal containing all the details of sellers and buyers registered under GST’s regulation. Businesses and taxpayers can access these details from the GSTN for filing their returns, logging invoice data, etc.

Companies have to file a total of 37 returns, one annual return and 3 monthly returns (once every 3 months) during a financial year. These contain information, including details of inward and outward supplies instigated by an organisation. The data can be prepared offline and uploaded whenever there is an internet connection available.

How to Check GST Return Status?

The following ways can be used to track GST returns status online-

- Tracking Through ARN

Here are the steps to check the status through the Application Reference Number (ARN)-

Step 1: Open the official GST portal and log in.
Step 2: Click 'Services' > 'Returns' > 'Track Return status'.
Step 3: Enter the ARN number.
Step 4: Click on the search option to view the GST return application status.

- Tracking through GST Returns Filing Period

Step 1: Log in to the official GST portal.
Step 2: Click on 'Services' > 'Returns' > 'Track Return Status'.
Step 3: Click on the GST Return Filing period and enter the dates.
Step 4: Click on the 'Search' to check the status.

- When Tracking Through the Status

Step 1: Open the GST portal and choose the search taxpayer option.
Step 2: Under the GSTIN/UIN option, enter GSTIN ID and fill out the captcha code. Click on the search. Note the Captcha Code will appear once you have entered the GSTIN ID.

After filling out all the details and submitting them, the required details, such as company name, registration date, and GSTIN/UIN status, will be displayed on the screen.

How to Download GST Returns Online

Follow the steps listed below to download the GST returns online-

Step 1: Log in to the GST Portal.
Step 2: Click on ‘File GST Returns'.
Step 3: Choose the period, i.e. the year and month and then click on the ‘Search’ option.
Step 4: Click on ‘View GSTR 1’
Step 5: Next, choose the ‘Preview’ option.

Penalty for Late Filing

Penalty in the form of late fees will be levied on taxpayers if they fail to file their GST return on time. A total of Rs.200 (Rs.100 as CGST and Rs.100 as SGST) is charged per day, which can go as high as Rs.5000. However, this rate may change depending on present regulations. The time period will be calculated from the day after the final deadline till the day the complete payment is made.

Integrated Goods and Services Tax does not attract any late fee, although the taxpayer will be required to pay an additional 18% interest in addition to the late fee.

Read more on GST Late Fees

Every taxpayer should be well aware of the process of GST filing. It will help them abide by the latest regulations of Goods and Services Tax at all times.

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