The introduction of GST by the 101st Constitutional Amendment Act, 2016 has transformed the entire tax system of India by unifying various indirect taxes into one comprehensive tax structure. One crucial aspect of this system is the GST invoice which plays a very important role in the life of businesses and customers.
What is a GST Invoice?
In simple words, a GST invoice is a legal document used in the GST regime to record the sale of goods and services. It is an important instrument for businesses as it serves as the evidence of a transaction for both the supplier and the recipient. Along with the total payable amount, it contains the name, address, and GST no. of the supplier.
GST invoices are essential for claiming input tax credits, complying with tax regulations, and ensuring transparency in business transactions. Input tax credit is the mechanism which allows a taxpayer to set off the GST paid on the purchase of goods or services from the GST payable on the supply of products or services.
Who should issue a GST Invoice?
GST invoice should be issued by the registered taxpayer who is engaged in the supply of goods or services or both. It is mandatory for every business who have GST no. to issue GST invoice to its customers.
For a business that is engaging in selling goods, usually, an invoice will be generated shortly after delivery and in a service-oriented business, the invoice is generated after the service has been provided. However, it is advisable for the business to follow up with the client first, to ensure the customer is satisfied because the customer is the king.
What are the mandatory fields a GST Invoice should have?
(a) Name, address and GSTIN of the supplier;
(b) A consecutive serial number;
(c) Date of its issue;
(d) Name, address and GSTIN or UIN, if registered, of the
(e) Name and address of the recipient and the address of
delivery, along with the name of the State and its code, if
such recipient is unregistered and where the value of
a taxable supply is fifty thousand rupees or more;
(f) HSN code of goods or Accounting Code of services;
(g) Description of goods or services;
(h) Quantity in case of goods and unit or Unique Quantity
(i) Total value of supply of goods or services or both;
(j) Taxable value of supply of goods or services or both
taking into account discount or abatement, if any;
(k) Rate of tax (central tax, State tax, integrated tax, Union
territory tax or cess);
(l) Amount of tax charged in respect of taxable goods or
services (central tax, State tax, integrated tax, Union
territory tax or cess);
(m) Place of supply along with the name of State, in case of a
supply in the course of inter-State trade or commerce;
(n) Address of delivery where the same is different from the place of supply;
(o) Whether the tax is payable on a reverse charge basis; and
(p) Signature or digital signature of the supplier or his authorised representative.
How to Personalize GST Invoices?
Personalizing GST invoices is essential for businesses to maintain a professional image and meet branding requirements. Here are some of the tips to personalize GST invoices:
What are other types of invoices?
Some of the important invoices are as follows:
Can you revise invoices issued before GST?
Yes, you can revise the invoice issued before GST. Before getting the permanent registration certificate of GST, one has to apply for provisional registration. As a dealer, you can issue a revised invoice against the previously issued invoice but it should be within 1 month from the date of issue of the registration certificate.
GST Invoicing under Special Cases
In special cases, businesses have to adhere according to the special provisions to remain GST compliant. Some of the special cases are the export of goods and services, supply to the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) Unit, reverse charge mechanism, etc.
How many copies of Invoices should be issued?
Copies of invoices depend on the goods and services supplied by the dealer:
For Goods: For goods, a triplicate should be issued i.e. original copy to the recipient, one copy to the transporter and one should be kept with the dealer itself.
For Services: For services, a duplicate should be issued i.e. original copy to the recipient and another to be kept by the dealer.
FAQs on invoice
What’s the difference between invoice date and due date?
The invoice date is the date when the invoice was issued on the bill book, whereas the due date is the date when the payment is due on the invoice.
How to issue an invoice under reverse charge?
In the case of reverse charge, the recipient of the goods or services is liable to pay GST instead of the supplier. The recipient should issue a tax invoice and comply with reverse charge provisions as per GST regulations.
Is it mandatory to maintain an invoice serial number?
Yes, it is mandatory to maintain invoice serial no. as it helps in tracking the invoices.
Can I digitally sign my invoice through DSC?
Yes, you can sign your invoice through a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) to ensure and maintain authenticity.
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