The GST Law has subsumed around 17 taxes. For the legacy taxes, now the final assessments are going on throughout the Country. These assessments are going to see a sunset soon and with the completion of these assessments, Trade & Industry will require to take a call as to the period for which they need to maintain their books of accounts.

In this article we have tried to compile the period of retention under most laws. Hope the same will be helpful in your professional sphere –

Preservation Of Accounts and Records Under the Erstwhile Laws

Law Period of retention Relevant Provisions
Central Excise Law 5 years immediately after the financial year to which such records pertain. Rule 10 of Central Rules, 2002
Service Tax Law 5 years immediately after the financial year to which such records pertain Rule 5(3) of the Service Tax Rules, 1994
WB VAT > 8 years from the expiry of the year to which they relate

> 4 years after the expiry of specified period mentioned in the certificate of eligibility if the dealer continues to enjoy deferment of tax under clause (a) of sub-section (1) of section 118

Rule 90 of the WB VAT Rules 2005
Maharashtra VAT 6 years from the expiry of the year to which they relate Rule 68 of Maharashtra VAT Rules, 2005
Karnataka VAT 5 years after the end of the year to which they relate Section 32 of the Karnataka VAT Act, 2003
Kerala > five years from the expiry of the year to which the assessment relates

> two year from the date of disposal of the appeal or revision arising out of such assessment or completion of any other proceeding under the Act connected with such assessment or appeal or revision

Rule 58 of the Kerala VAT Rules, 2005
Rajasthan VAT 5 years excluding the year to which they relate Section 71(5) of the Rajasthan VAT Act, 2003
Orissa VAT 5 years after the end of the year to which they relate Section 62(5) of the Orissa Vat Act, 2005
Punjab VAT 6 years after the end of the year to which these relate Section 44 of Punjab VAT Act
Tamil Nadu VAT 5 years from the date of assessment Rule 6(11) of the Tamil Nadu VAT Rules, 2007
Tripura VAT 5 years after the expiry of the year to which they relate Rule 21(8) of Tripura VAT Rules, 2011
Uttar Pradesh VAT 8 years after expiration of the assessment year to which they relate. Rule 39 of UP VAT Rules, 2010
Uttarakhand VAT 6 years after the close of the assessment year to which they relate Section 61 of the Uttarakhand VAT Act, 2005
Andhra Pradesh VAT 6 years after the end of the year to which they relate Section 42(4) of the Andhra Pradesh VAT Act, 2005
Arunachal Pradesh VAT 5 years after the conclusion of the events or transactions which they record Section 49(6) of the Arunachal Pradesh VAT Act
Bihar VAT 6 years after the end of the year to which they relate Rule 33(9) of Bihar VAT Rules, 2005
Chandigarh VAT 6 years counted from the first day of the financial year following the financial year to which they pertain Rule 58(3) of the Chandigarh VAT Rules, 2006
Delhi VAT 7 years after the conclusion of the events or transactions which they record Section 48 of the Delhi VAT Act, 2004
Gujarat VAT 8 years from the end of the accounting year to which they relate Section 64 of the Gujarat VAT Act, 2003
Haryana VAT 8 years after the close of the year to which such books relate Section 29 of the Haryana VAT Act, 2003
Himachal Pradesh VAT 6 years counted from the first day of the financial year following the financial year to which they pertains Rule 56(3) of Himachal Pradesh VAT Rules, 2005
Jammu and Kashmir VAT 8 years after the end of the year to which they relate Rule 62(12) of the Jammu & Kashmir VAT Rules, 2005
Jharkhand VAT 5 years after the end of the year to which they relate Section 60(9) of the Jharkhand VAT Act, 2005

***In addition of the above, the records shall be required to be preserved till such period as those may be required for final disposal of any appeal, review, revision or reference under the Act or for final disposal of any case pending before any Court or Tribunal.

PRESERVATION OF ACCOUNTS AND RECORDS UNDER THE EXISTING LAWS

Act Period of retention of accounts Relevant Provisions of Law Who is required to
maintain
Goods and Services Tax > 6 years from the due date of furnishing of annual return, or

> 1 year after final disposal of such appeal or revision or proceedings or investigation

Section 36 of the CGST Act, 2017 every registered person
Income Tax Law > 6 years from the end of the relevant assessment year, or

> If the assessment is reopened under Section 147 of the Act, till the time assessment is completed.

Rule 6F of the Income Tax
Rules
persons carrying on
certain professions
under section 44AA(3)
Income Tax Law 8 years from the end of the relevant assessment year Rule 10D of the Income
Tax Rules
every person who has entered into an
international
transaction or a
specified domestic
transaction
Company Law 8 financial years immediately preceding a financial year Section 128(5) of the
Companies Act
Company Law The records shall not be disposed of without the prior permission of the Central Government. Section 239 of the
Companies Act, 2013
company which has been amalgamated
with, or whose shares
have been acquired by, another company
Company Law for a period of 5 years from the date of its dissolution Section 347 of the
Companies Act 2013,
a company which has been wound-up and of its liquidator
SEBI Guidelines Minimum period of 5 years Regulation 18 of SEBI (Stock Brokers & Sub- brokers) Regulations every stock broker
SEBI Guidelines Minimum period of 3 years Regulation 15 of the SEBI (Registrars to an Issue and Share Transfer Agents) Regulations the registrar to an issue or share transfer agent
SEBI Guidelines Minimum period of 8 years regulation 50 of the SEBI (Mutual Funds)
Regulations
every asset
management company
Prevention of Money-Laundering Act five years from the date of transaction Section 12 of PMLA transactions between
the RE and the
customer

[Vivek Jalan is a Fellow Member of the Institute Of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) & a qualified LL.B. He is the member of The CII- Economic Affairs & Taxation Committee. He is the Co Chairman of The Indirect Tax Committee of The Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He is also a visiting faculty for Indirect Taxes in The Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Institute Of Chartered Accountants of India and Institute of Cost Accountants of India. He has 8 books on Taxation and has written more than 100 articles on varied Topics. He is regularly representing critical cases before the Hon’ble Tribunal and also is advising in representations before The Hon’ble High Courts in matters related to Taxation]

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Mr. Vivek Jalan is a Fellow Member of the Institute Of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) & a qualified LL.B. He is the member of The CII- Economic Affairs & Taxation Committee. He is the Co Chairman of The Indirect Tax Committee of The Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He is also View Full Profile

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3 Comments

  1. SSManku says:

    TNVAT says six years from date of assessment.The last assessment was done in 2018 for 2017-2018 first quarter,now do we keep the records for six years for ever or are allowed to keep only records from the current date like incometax .When will we be allowed to eliminate the records for previous taxes like ED,ST and VAT

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