Cracking Down on Fake Registrations: Navigating the Recent GST Guidelines in India

We’re delving into the significance of the recent guidelines issued by the Goods and Services Tax (GST) department in India in May 2023. The guidelines aim to combat the prevalence of fake registrations and highlight the need for rigorous physical verification by GST Officers. Join us as we uncover the crucial details of these guidelines and explore how you can ensure a seamless verification process. 

The Need for Physical Verification

Between 16th May 2023 and 15th July 2023, GST Officers may conduct visits to your business premises for physical verification. The primary objective of these visits is to authenticate the legitimacy of registered businesses. These measures play a vital role in maintaining the integrity of the GST system and fostering a fair business environment.

Taking Action for a Smooth Process

To facilitate a seamless physical verification process, it’s essential to take proactive steps. Here are some recommendations to help you prepare:

  • Keep important documents readily available: Ensure copies of key documents, such as the rent/lease agreement with a Non-Objection Certificate (NOC), PAN and Aadhar of all Indian Directors, passport of foreign Directors, and PAN and Aadhar of the authorised signatory, are accessible at your business premises.
  • Prominently display necessary documents: Exhibit your Certificate of Registration (RC) and Goods and Services Tax Identification Number (GSTIN) on the name board at the entry of your place of business. This will help the GST Officers verify your registration without any confusion.
  • Briefly explain your business model: In the event that an Officer enquires about your company’s business model, be prepared to provide a concise explanation in just 2-3 lines.
  • Communicate the absence of Indian Directors: If the Officers wish to meet Indian Directors who are unavailable, inform them of the reason for their absence. If possible, arrange for the Director to come to the office or propose an alternative day for a physical meeting that suits both parties.
  • Ensure office presence during remote work: If your employees are working remotely, it is important to have at least one or two present in the office on all working days. In case employees are not available, notify the Receptionist, who should promptly inform a company representative about the GST Officer’s visit.

Navigating the Verification Process

To effectively deal with a GST Officer during the verification process, we recommend following these steps:

  • Be polite and courteous: Interact with the Officer in a respectful manner, maintaining a professional attitude throughout the process.
  • Provide required documents and records: Furnish all the documents and records requested by the Officer, ensuring they have access to the necessary information for verification.
  • Clarify doubts and queries: Address any doubts or queries the Officer may have regarding your business transactions. Clear communication can help facilitate a smooth verification process.
  • Request time for document arrangement: If you are unable to provide any documents or records immediately, politely inform the Officer and seek a reasonable time frame to arrange for the requested materials.
  • Express concerns respectfully: Should you have any concerns or issues regarding the verification process, communicate them to the Officer in a respectful manner. Effective communication can help address any potential misunderstandings.

Cooperation is Key

Whilst these steps provide a general guideline, it’s important to note that the GST Officer may require additional details during the physical verification process. Cooperating fully and providing all necessary information is crucial to ensuring a smooth verification process and upholding the integrity of your business.

By adhering to the recent guidelines set out by the Indian government’s GST department, you can demonstrate your commitment to compliance and legitimacy. Remember to prepare your documents, display the necessary information, and approach the verification process with professionalism and cooperation. For any further questions or assistance, please do not hesitate to get in touch with the tax and compliance team at Seamless. Together, let’s uphold the standards of transparency and accountability in business operations.