After budget 2012, there is lot of confusion as to frequency of filing of  Service Tax Return. Budget 2012 Presented by Finance Minister on 17.03.2012  proposed that the cycles for the payment service tax and filing of return should coincide.  In View of the same Following Changes are proposed in Rules Related to periodicity of Service tax Return Filing and Service tax payment.

Filing of Return of Service Tax

It is provided that an assessee whose service tax liability was Rs. 25 lakhs or more in the previous year and in case of a newly registered service provider other than individual or firms, will have to file return “Monthly”.

And in other cases i.e. Individuals and partnership firm or proprietary firms having paid service tax of less than Rs. 25 lakhs in previous year, will have to file return ‘Quarterly’.

Quarterly return Monthly return
  • Individual/Firm/LLP assessee Any amount of tax liability in immediately preceding financial year
  • Assesses other than Individual/Firm/LLP Tax liability less than 25 lakhs in immediately preceding financial year
Assesses other than Individual/Firm/LLP Tax liability more than 25 lakhs in immediately preceding financial year

Payment of Service Tax

Rules relating to payment of service tax has been rationalised. At present only Individuals or Firms are allowed to pay the taxes on quarterly basis. Now this relaxation has been given to every small assessee. The same can be understood with the following table:-

.No. Amount of tax paid in previous year Individual/Firms & New Assessee (Irrespective of constitution) Other than Individual/Firms
1 Upto Rs. 25.00 lacs Quarterly Quarterly
2 More than Rs. 25.00 lacs Quarterly Monthly

In an another important change, now every Individual or firm (including LLP) can pay service tax on receipt basis provided their turnover in previous year (FY 2011-12 for 2012-13) towards taxable service was upto Rs. 50.00 lacs. 

Common Service Tax & Excise Return Form

It had also been proposed to harmonize the ER-1, ER-3 and ST-3 returns so that a single common return can be prescribed instead of these three returns as measure of simplification of the Business Processes in respect of filing the Return by assesses. Now return to be filed in proposed new ESTReturn form.

Common Service Tax & Excise Registration  Form
It is proposed to prescribe a common application format for seeking  registration under Central Excise as well as Service Tax.

Current Status of Return Frequency, Payment Due Dates, Registration & Return Forms

1. Return Frequency – In nutshell, these amendments are just proposed and till now not enacted  by amending Service Tax Rules, 1994 and Central Excise Rules, 2002. Thus it is clear that provision as to filing of service tax returns are not amended and still service tax returns to be filed half yearly.

Payment will also be governed by old provisions till new proposed provisions get enacted which are as follows :-

1. In case of Individuals or Proprietary Concerns and Partnership Firm, service tax is to be paid on a quarterlybasis. The due date for payment of service tax is the 5th of the month immediately following the respective quarter ( in case of e-payment, by 6th of the month immediately following the respective quarter). For this purpose, quarters are: April to June, July to September, October to December and January to March. However, payment for the last quarter i.e. January to March is required to be made by 31st of March itself.

(Article wass First Published on 05.04.2012 and Republished on 11.07.2012 with amendments)

2     In case of any other category of service provider other than specified at 6.1 above,  service tax is to be paid on a monthly basis, by the 5th of the following month ( in case of e-payment, by 6th of the month immediately following the respective month). However,  payment for the month of March is required to be made by 31st of March itself.      

Service Tax Registration & Return Forms – Old ST-1, ST-2 & ST-3 will continue till new forms get notified by government which has not been notified till date.

More Under Service Tax


  1. PARESH SHAH says:

    My friends repair & maint . business. He want to know abt there any system like If service tax amt less than 25 lacs in a year . should he pay serivce tax on monthly basis or quartely

  2. Sukan says:

    We have provided the service in Q4 of accounting year 14-15 for which our client have paid us service tax to the tune of around Rs.5-7 lakhs. At that time we did not have service tax registration number. now we have got registered in April-15. can we pay the service tax along with interest now which was collected by us Q4? Please reply. it is urgent.

  3. CA. C V SURYAM says:

    Dear Sir,

    I could not find such amendment i.r.o quarterly remittances of tax in the case of persons irrespective of their status if the tax paid is less than Rs.25 lacs in the previous year. The only limit under the proviso to rule 6 was found i.r.o of gross taxable amount but not any tax limit.

    Hence, it is requested to inform in the domain as corregendum the relevant notification please.

    Chartered Accountant

  4. Nikhil Jhanwar says:

    Thanks Sir for information. May I know where these changes are proposed in Budget 2012. Whether it is contained in Guidance Paper. I understand Such changes are not made through any notification.

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