Currently a person may have different registrations under different indirect tax statutes like Excise Duty, Service Tax and State VAT/Sales Tax. Provisions relating to registration, returns, credits, payment, refund, invoicing, assessments etc. vary under all these different statutes. Further in case of Sales Tax, these provisions even vary from one state to another. Further Threshold limits also vary under these legislatures. While a manufacture gets a ceiling of 1.5 Crore, service Provider gets just Rs. 10 Lakhs as threshold ceiling. On the other hand threshold for VAT registration also vary from state to state.

Goods and Service Tax (GST) as contemplated as One Nation- One Tax will integrate all these separate statutes into uniform statutes. It will create a single unified market across the country for supply of goods or services.

Persons liable for registration:

  • As per Section 22 of CGST Act, 2017, a person is liable to be registered in all the State or Union territory from where he makes a taxable supply of goods or services, if his aggregate turnover in a financial year exceeds Rs. 20 Lakhs.
  • However said threshold of Rs. 20 Lakhs will be reduced to Rs. 10 Lakh if a person is making supply from any of the Special category States.
  • All those persons who are having registration under any of the existing law shall be liable to be registered under GST with effect from the appointed day.
  • There will be compulsory registration in following cases irrespective of any threshold turnover limit:

(i) Person making any inter-State taxable supply;

(ii) persons who are required to pay tax under reverse charge;

(iii) every electronic commerce operator;

(iv) Input Service Distributor;

(v) persons who are required to deduct tax under section 51;

(vi) persons who supply goods or services or both, through such electronic commerce operator who is required to collect tax at source under section 52 except in a case where such electronic commerce operator himself is liable to pay tax due to the application of Section 9(5) of CGST Act, 2017.

(vii) non-resident taxable persons or casual taxable persons making taxable supply.

Requirement of Separate Registration for each State:

  • As per Section 22, a person is required to be registered in each state or union territory from where he makes a taxable supply of goods or services.
  • Thus a person having its branches/ depot from where he makes his taxable supply will required to be separately registered if it is situated in different state.

One Registration for one PAN in one State:

  • Since GST registration is based on PAN and State, only one Provisional ID and password will be issued to a given PAN for a given State, irrespective of the number of registrations on that PAN within the State.
  • In case the assessee wishes to enroll in GST for the other registrations as well, the details of these registrations (addresses of premises) may be included as ‘Additional Place of Business’ in the Enrollment Application Form.

Migration into GST of a person having only VAT Registration:

  • In such a case, he will be provided the Provisional ID and Password for getting migration into GST by the commercial tax department of his state.
  • He just need to login into the GST Common Portal, and after furnishing the requisite particulars, may get himself migrated into GST.

Migration into GST of a person having registration under State VAT, Central Excise and Service Tax:

  • In such a case, State VAT department will provide Provisional ID and password to such person for migrating into GST.
  • Such person is not required to be separately migrated for his Central Excise or Service Tax registration if his migration is already done by State VAT department. He may just submit the Application Reference Number generated by the common portal before the Central Excise and Service Tax department as a proof of his migration.
  • While Filing GST Form-20 relating to migration in GST Common Portal, such person needs to add his Service Tax (ST) and Central Excise (CE) registration details in such form.
  • While migrating to GST through VAT on the GST Common Portal, in case such person did not add his ST and CE registration details in the Enrollment Application, and Application Reference Number (ARN) has been generated, then he will not be able to add remaining registration now. He will be able to add such details of other registrations in the Enrolment Application only after the appointed date through the process of amendment.

The same has also been clarified by CBEC FAQ on Migration into GST as follows:

“The facility to add existing registrations in the Enrolment Application is available on the GST Common Portal. You can add the remaining registrations at the time of enrolment under GST. However, if you have submitted the Enrolment Application with DSC or E-sign without adding the remaining registrations, and have already received the Application Reference Number (ARN), you will not be able to add the remaining registrations now. You will be able to add or remove the other registrations in the Enrolment Application only after the appointed date (i.e., date of implementation of GST) through the process of amendment (non-core).”

Migration into GST of a person having only Service Tax Registration for his single premise:

  • In such a case, he will be provided the Provisional ID and Password for getting migration into GST in his ACES portal.
  • He just need to login into the GST Common Portal, and after furnishing the requisite particulars, may get himself migrated into GST.

Migration into GST of person having centralized registration in Service Tax:

  • If a person is an existing PAN-based Service Tax (Centralized Registration) assessee having 5 branches over 5 different states with its head office in another state, and wish to enroll in GST, then he will need to be registered in each of the states from where services are provides. Since in this case services would have been provided from 5 branches along with head office, he will require separate registration for each of these states under GST.
  • CBEC in its FAQ on GST Migration has clarified this issue. As per the Answer to Question 2 of FAQ,

“On ACES portal, the Centralized Registration (CR) captures the address details (including State) of the assessee’s registered business premises in a State, as well as, branches or many registered addresses in different States across the country from where services are provided.

As a policy, these assessees are issued only one Provisional ID and password for each State (across the CR premises and all branches). For example, an assessee having CR number ABCDE1234FSD002 is having business premises in Delhi, and branches in Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu. In this case, the assessee is issued five Provisional IDs and passwords, one for each State.

The CR assessee may also have a factory (under Central Excise registration) or a Service Tax (ST) single premises registration (independent of its Centralized Registration) in the State of Tamil Nadu (registration number ABCDE1234FXM001 or ABCDE1234FSD001). Then a Provisional ID and password for the State of Tamil Nadu will be issued against either the CE or ST registration number mentioned earlier. In this case, the CR assessee will get four Provisional IDs and passwords for the remaining States i.e. Delhi, Haryana, Maharashtra and Karnataka.”

  • On the other hand, if a centralized registered assesse is having different branches within the state, then he will be required one single registration under GST covering all those branches. In such case, he will have to specify any one place as principle place of business and all other places as additional places of business. However he may voluntary take separate registration for any of his branches within the state, if that branch is a separate business vertical.

Cancellation of Registration of a person who is not liable to registration under GST:

  • If a person is not liable to be registered in GST, he may file an application before the respective tax authorities that he is not liable to be registered.
  • In such cases, the provisional registration id generated for such person will be cancelled and shall be deemed to have not been issued.

Gist of some other important FAQ on Migration issued by CBEC:

Qu.: I am an existing taxpayer and wish to enroll in GST. My previous registration number was ST001 and after cancellation (or surrender), my current registration number is ST002. However, a Provisional ID and password has been issued against my previous registration number ST001. I logged into the ACES portal (using my existing ACES username and password), and received the Provisional ID and password for my previous registration number ST001, but not for the current registration number ST002.

Ans.: As a policy, if the assessee has multiple registrations within a State on the same PAN, only one Provisional ID and password will be issued, as per the following order: Only one  provisional ID and password will be issued to a given PAN within a State, irrespective of the number of registrations on that PAN within that State.

Apparently, you have more than one registration i.e., ST001 and ST002, of which registration number ST001 is either “Inactive” or “Surrendered”. However, as per CBEC guidelines, a Provisional ID and password has already been allotted against the registration number ST001. For further assistance, please contact CBEC Mitra Helpdesk at cbecmitra.helpdesk@gst.gov.in or call at the toll-free number 1800-1200-232, and provide your registration details (both earlier and current registration numbers)

Qu.: I am an existing PAN-based Service Tax (ST), Central Excise (CE) and State VAT assessee. I      did not receive the Provisional ID and password for migrating to GST.

Ans.: You may have multiple registrations under the State VAT department. For further investigation, please contact CBEC Mitra Helpdesk at cbecmitra.helpdesk@gst.gov.in or call at the toll-free number 1800-1200-232. When requesting help, please provide your registration details to CBEC Mitra Helpdesk. CBEC Mitra Helpdesk will notify you as soon as the issue is resolved.

Qu.: I am an existing PAN-based Service Tax (ST) and Central Excise (CE) assessee. After

logging into the ACES portal, under SERVICE TAX, the Provisional ID is showing “Awaited”.

Ans.: If you are already registered as a Central Excise (CE) or Service Tax (ST) assessee on the ACES portal, after 31.01.2017, then your Provisional ID and password for migrating to GST has not yet been generated. You are advised to wait for the same. Any updates on issuance of Provisional IDs and passwords, to such assessees, will be published on both the CBEC and ACES websites. So, please checking the status of your registration at www.cbec.gov.in and www.aces.gov.in.

(Disclaimer: This write up is based on the understanding and interpretation of author and the same is not intended to be a professional advice.)

[The author is a Chartered Accountant and can also be reached at goyalcanitin@gmail.com]

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