This is to apprise of a recent circular bearing no. 157/13/2021-GST, dated 20th July, 2021 issued by the CBIC for ‘Clarification regarding extension of limitation under GST Law in terms of Hon’ble Supreme Court’s Order dated 27.04.2021’ as follows:
- Hon’ble Supreme Court has provided for extension of limitation vide an order dated 27 April 2021 in Miscellaneous Application No. 665/2021 in SMW(C) No. 3/2020.
- Above order was originally issued on 23 March 2020 and restored on 27 April 2021 directing that the period(s) of limitation, as prescribed under any general or special laws in respect of all judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings, whether condonable or not, shall stand extended till further orders.
- In light of the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, CBIC has in exercise of the powers conferred by section 168A of the CGST Act, 2017, also issued various notifications extending the time limit for completion or compliance of any action, by any authority or by any person, which has been specified in, or prescribed or notified under the said Act, falling during such period as provided therein, up to such date as provided therein. Said extensions by CBIC were inclusive of below compliances or actions:
completion of any proceeding or passing of any order or issuance of any notice, intimation, notification, sanction or approval or such other action, by whatever name called, by any authority, commission or tribunal, by whatever name called, under the provisions of the Acts stated above; or
filing of any appeal, reply or application or furnishing of any report, document, return, statement or such other record, by whatever name called, under the provisions of the Acts stated above’
Notification no. 35/2020- Central Tax dated 03 April 2020, no. 55/2020- Central Tax dated 27 June 20200, no. 14/2021 – Central Tax dated 1 May 2021, no. 24/2021- Central Tax dated 01 June 2021 were issued for extending the time limit for above compliances or actions up to specified dates.
- With regards to the above order by SC, various representations have been received by board on clarifications around the applicability of these extension of limitations and the same deliberated in the 43rd Meeting of GST Council, and subsequently legal opinion was solicited regarding applicability of the order of the Hon’ble Supreme Court to the limitations of time lines under GST Law.
- Basis such opinion, it is hereby clarified that various actions/compliances under GST can be broadly categorised as follows:
- Proceedings that need to be initiated or compliances that need to be done by the taxpayers: These actions would continue to be governed only by the statutory mechanism and time limit provided/ extensions granted under the statute itself and aforementioned orders of SC would not apply.
- Quasi-Judicial proceedings by tax authorities: The tax authorities can continue to hear and dispose of proceedings performing the functions inter alia including appeals which are filed and are pending, disposal of application for refund, application for revocation of cancellation of registration, adjudication proceedings of demand notices, etc. as quasi-judicial authority and aforementioned orders of SC would not apply.
- Appeals by taxpayers/ tax authorities against any quasi- judicial order: The time line as per SC directive shall be extended in cases where an appeal is required to be filed before Joint/ Additional Commissioner (Appeals), Commissioner (Appeals), Appellate Authority for Advance Ruling, Tribunal and various courts against any quasi-judicial order or where a proceeding for revision or rectification of any order is required to be undertaken.
Point (a) covers the cases of original proceedings and which are under no judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings.
Point (b) covers those cases of quasi-judicial proceedings against any order which are already initiated.
Point (c) covers the quasi-judicial proceedings (against any order) which are yet to be initiated.
Extension as provided by SC shall apply only in respect of any appeal which is required to be filed as per point (c) and is not applicable to any other proceedings under GST Laws as per point (a) and (b) above.
Trust the above helps. Should you require any further clarifications or details, please feel free to revert: