GSTR – 9

GST Annual Returns Filing

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GST Annual Returns Filing

Returns that were required to be filed under GST Law

For this purpose government in its original framework required the filing of three returns monthly – GSTR 1 , GSTR 2 and GSTR 3 by each registered taxable person through the GST common portal.

The reason for the failure of GSTR 2 and GSTR 3

However, because of technical glitches and under-preparedness of the IT infrastructure, it could not be possible to put in place filing of all these Returns. This was also owing to the fact that there were hue and cry in the initial phase of GST implementation where taxpayers were also grappling with the challenges of the understanding the substantial provisions of the law + making continuous compliance of the law.

GSTR 3B Introduced

There were always apprehensions as to whether the matching system on a real-time basis would be successful in India considering the experience of the various countries in the past and mammoth volume of business transactions in India. These apprehensions became reality where the common portal started crippling and the GSTR-2 and GSTR-3 could never virtually be introduced (except GSTR-2 filing requirement for the month of July). Realizing various challenges faced by the industry, the Government attempted to simplify the process of filing the return and introduced the stop-gap arrangement of filing GSTR-3B instead of GSTR-2 and GSTR-3.

The objective behind the introduction of GSTR 3B to

HSN wise details of input tax credits availed for inputs, services and capital goods is required to be disclosed based upon these criteria

  • Get the details of the transactions in the summary manner.
  • Avoid the transaction level reporting especially on the purchases(inward supply side).
  • Waive off the requirements of the matching of input tax credits with the corresponding outward supply reported by the vendors.

Final Returns to file under GST

Finally, the compliance requirement has been in the form of filing of GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B. Though, there have been frequent extensions in the filing of returns and waiving of the late fees and subsequent reduction therein.

The Practical Scenario in India

Being the first year of implementation, it has been felt and observed that the focus of everyone has been on the filing of returns without much care as to the sanctity of the data. The taxpayers were more concerned with the filing the returns without much focus as to whether all disclosure requirements have been made as required under the law.
Frequent amendments in the law also led to the confusion resulting in less than perfect fling of the Returns. There was no mechanism available for validating the data especially input tax credits due to abandoning of the GSTR-2 requirement.

Annual Returns Introduced

Everyone had the option of Annual Return in mind where it was thought that any mistakes occurred in the periodical returns could be corrected through Annual Return though without knowing much as to the contents and methodology to file the Annual Return.

Official Notification for Annual Returns Released

It has been a long wait for the release of the format of Annual Return. Finally, the Government had released the format of Annual Return vide Notification No. 39/2018-Central Tax dated 04.09.2018.

What is Annual Return under GST?

Annual Return is the return that is required to be filed annually for every financial year by the eligible registered person, except a few specified categories of persons.
It is a summary statement containing all the transactions occurred and reported in the periodical returns filed during the financial year. Further, it also captures the adjustments made to the transactions of the previous year after the end of the year. It is also the last option available with the assessee to disclose all transactions pertaining to the period of filing. Thus, we can say Annual Return is very comprehensive return.

Who is required to file the Annual Return under GST?

As per section 44 of the CGST Act, Every registered person is required to furnish an annual return for every financial year except a few categories of persons as provided in section 44(1).
Hence, there is a need to file the Annual Return by every registered person including the person paying tax under the composition scheme under section 10 of the Act.

Are there any exceptions to the filing of Annual Return?

There is no requirement to file the Annual Return by –

  • An Input Service Distributor (ISD)
  • A person paying tax under section 51 or section 52 (TDS / TCS)
  • A casual taxable person and (CTP)
  • A non-resident taxable person (NRTP)

Note: Every electronic commerce operator who is required to collect tax at source (TCS) in terms of section 52 is required to file an annual return in form 9B (which is not notified yet).

How are the annual returns to be filed? Online or Offline?

The annual return is to be filed electronically in such form and manner as may be prescribed by law.

What are the forms for filing the Annual Returns?

Rule 80 of the CGST Rules lays down the manner in which Annual Return is required to be filed by the registered persons.

  • Every registered person who is required to file Annual Return under section 44 shall file it electronically in FORM GSTR – 9 through the common portal.
  • In case of a person paying tax under composition scheme under section 10, the Annual Return has to be filed in Form Form GSTR-9A
  • E-commerce operator who is required to collect the tax under section 52 shall file Annual Return in the Form GSTR-9B .

What is the due date for filing Annual Returns?

As per section 44 of CGST Act, Annual returns must be filed on or before the 31st day of December following the end of the financial year, for which the return is being filed for all category of taxable person.
31st March 2019(now extended)for the filing of FY 2017-18 annual returns.

What are the Consequence of non-filing or failure to submit the annual return?

One or more of the following can be the consequences of not filing Annual return-

  • 1.Receipt of notice u/s 46 to file the return within 15 days.
  • 2.Late fee for non-filing or filing after due date shall be applicable u/s 47(2), being lower of
    1. Rs.100 per day during which such failure continues or
    2. 0.25% of turnover in the state or union territory.

    Note: The same late fee would also be applicable for SGST, whereby the total penalty for the registered person will be double the above amount.

  • 3. General penalty up to Rs.25,000 could be applicable as per section 125 of the Act.

What is the Official Notification Number for the Annual GST Return Format?

The Government had released the format of Annual Return vide Notification No. 39/2018-Central Tax dated 04.09.2018.

What is the basis for the preparation of Annual Returns?

The basis of preparation of Annual Return is GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B filed during the year. Some of the fields in the Annual Return are auto-populated from the data available in the common portal. Auto-populated data is based on the periodical returns filed by the registered persons. Whereas, most of the other details will be furnished by the registered person at the time of filing of Annual Returns.

Can Annual Returns once file can be revised/amended subsequently?

The Option of amendment of Annual Returns has not been provided under section 44 or rule 80. Thus, it appears that once the annual returns is filed, it would be considered as final and no further amendment would be possible.

Are there any documents that need to be submitted along with the Annual Returns?

The requirement to submit documents does not depend upon the filing of Annual Returns. Rather, it is linked to the applicability of getting your accounts audited. In GST liability for audit is governed by section 35(5) of the CGST Act 2017. As per the section, every registered person whose turnover during the financial year exceeds Rs 2 crore shall get his books of accounts audited.

Further, as per Section 44 (2) of the Act, every person who is required to get his accounts audited shall furnish the Annual Return along with the following documents-

  • Copy of audited annual accounts and
  • A Reconciliation Statement reconciling the value of supplies declared in the return furnished for the financial year with the audited annual financial statement, and such other particulars as may be prescribed.

Is every person required to file annual return required to get GST Audit done?

Filing of Annual return is not linked with the GST Audit. In other words, a person having an aggregate turnover less than Rs. 2 crores though may not be required to get the accounts audited, but is required to file the Annual Return.

How many Annual Returns need to be filed by an organization having multiple GSTIN’s?

All registered person except mentioned in section 44(1) of the CGST act are required to file annual returns. A person having multiple GSTINs shall be considered a distinct person for each GSTIN. Which means, he needs to file Annual Returns separately for each GSTIN. For Example, A company having 25 registrations across different states in India, would be required to file 25 Annual Returns for the Financial Year 2017-18.


GST Annual Returns Filing FAQs

Form GSTR-9 is an annual return to be filed once for each financial year, by the registered taxpayers who were regular taxpayers, including SEZ units and SEZ developers. The taxpayers are required to furnish details of purchases, sales, input tax credit or refund claimed or demand created etc. in this return.


Form GSTR-9 is to be filed by a person who is registered as a normal taxpayer, including SEZ unit or SEZ developer and the taxpayers who have withdrawn from the composition scheme to normal taxpayer any time during the financial year.


  • Composition taxpayers can file Annual Return in Form GSTR-9A.
  • Annual Return is not required to be filed by casual taxpayer / Non Resident taxpayer / ISD/ OIDAR Service Providers.

Form GSTR-9 is required to be filed by every person registered as normal taxpayer. However, certain class of taxpayers may be exempted from filing Form GSTR-9 by way of Notifications issued by Government of India from time to time.
Form GSTR-9C is required to be filed by every registered person whose aggregate turnover is above a certain threshold during the financial year, as notified by way of Notifications issued by Government of India from time to time. Such taxpayers are required to get their accounts audited by Chartered Accountant or Cost Accountant and need to submit a copy of audited annual accounts and reconciliation statement.

Yes, it’s mandatory to file Form GSTR-9 for normal taxpayers. It may, however, be made optional for taxpayers having AATO up to a certain threshold, from time to time.

Opt in and Opt out of composition & Form GSTR-9  


You are required to file both Form GSTR-9 and Form GSTR-9A, for the respective periods.

The period during which the taxpayer remained as composition taxpayer, Form GSTR-9A is required to be filed. And, for period for which the taxpayer is registered as normal taxpayer, Form GSTR-9 is required to be filed.

For example: If the taxpayer had opted for Composition scheme from 1st April to 31st December, then Form GSTR-9A is required to be filed for this period. And, if the taxpayer had opted out of composition scheme and registered as a normal taxpayer during period say 1st January to 31st March, then for this period Form GSTR-9 is required to be filed.

Yes, the annual return needs to be filed even if the taxpayer has got his registration cancelled during the said financial year.  


Taxpayers who have opted for the composition scheme need to file Form GSTR-9 for the period during which they were registered as a normal taxpayer.


Taxpayer who have opted out from the composition scheme during the relevant financial year is required to file Form GSTR-9 for the period they paid the tax at normal rates.


Pre-conditions for filing of Form GSTR-9 are:

  • Taxpayer must have active GSTIN during the relevant financial year as a normal/regular taxpayer even for a single day.

  • Taxpayer has filed all applicable returns i.e. Form GSTR-1/IFF and Form GSTR-3B of the relevant financial year before filing the Annual Return.



Nil Form GSTR-9 can be filed for the Financial year, if you have: –

  • NOT made any outward supply (commonly known as sale); AND
  • NOT received any goods/services (commonly known as purchase); AND
  • NO other liability to report; AND
  • NOT claimed any credit; AND
  • NOT claimed any refund; AND
  • NOT received any order creating demand; AND
  • There is no late fee to be paid etc.



Navigate to Services > Returns > Annual Return to file Form GSTR-9.


Recent Updates

06 February 2023

Individuals who wish to enroll or continue with the Composition Scheme for the financial year 2023-24 can submit a declaration in Form CMP-02 through the GST portal by 31 March 2023.

17 December 2022

  • Decriminalisation of three GST offences:
  • Obstruction of an officer’s performance of duties
  • Increase in the tax threshold amount for launching a criminal GST offence from the current limit of ₹1 crore to ₹2 crores, except where fake invoices are involved
  • Decriminalisation of compounding of offence up to a certain limit in order to lessen the workload of courts
  • GST on pulse husks for cow feed (including chilka and concentrates) was decreased from 5% to 0% as part of a few rate rationalisation issues. The 5% GST on ethyl alcohol that was previously paid at a concessionary 18% rate was also extended to refineries for the purpose of mixing with gasoline
  • A few tax-related issues were clarified, including the GST on equipment used by oil companies for exploration and how to handle invoice mismatches in GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B in the early years
  • To make e-commerce more accessible to all micro-businesses, e-commerce operators can let suppliers to be both registered under the composition system and unregistered vendors
  • The 48 meeting’s agenda did not include the second report on casinos and online gaming because it was not distributed
  • Regarding a GST rate increase, no decision has been made.

1 December 2022

The 48 GST Council meeting will be held on Saturday, 17 December 2022, with a lengthy agenda

10 November 2022

  • Circular 181 was released to make it clear that revisions pertaining to refunds will take effect immediately
  • Circular 182 is released to outline the verification process for approving claims for transitional credit made by taxpayers between 1 October 2022 and 30 November 2022.

5 July 2022

  • The deadline for GSTR-4 for FY 2021-22 has been extended until 28 July 2022, with a waiver of late fees, as per Notification 12/2022 dated 5 July 2022.
  • Notification 12/2022, dated 5 July 2022, has extended the deadline for filing CMP-08 for April-June 2022 to 31 July 2022.

26 May 2022

According to the notification CGST No.7/2022 dated 26 May 2022, if GSTR-4 for FY 2021-22 is filed between 1 May and 30 June 2022, the late fee for the delay in filing will be waived.

24 February 2022

Those who are either composition taxable persons or interested in opting for the scheme for FY 2022-23, need to submit a declaration on the GST portal using Form CMP-02 by the deadline of 31 March 2022.

GST Payment for Different Taxpayers

The GST payment process is largely the same for all taxpayers. Payment is not required if the electronic cash ledger has a sufficient cash balance. In other words, if the cash balance is insufficient, the taxpayer must utilise a challan to deposit money into the cash ledger using prescribed payment methods. The following is an overview of the payment process for various taxpayer types

Regular Taxpayer

Around the time of submitting GSTR-3B, they must use the PMT-06 challan to make any GST payments to the electronic cash ledger. The details will be published in GSTR-3B. They can also generate a challan and pay for it before or after logging in, or while completing GSTR-3B returns.

Quarterly Taxpayer

These are taxpayers who have chosen to participate in the GST QRMP scheme. They must deposit tax directly utilising the PMT-6 in the first two months of a quarter and make payment while filing GSTR-3B in the last month of the quarter.

Taxpayers Filing Nil GST Returns

For the relevant tax period, whether for the month or quarter, these taxpayers have no sales or purchases, and no tax is due. They don’t have to use the challan or pay anything.

Composition Taxable Persons

These taxpayers must total up their sales/turnover information for the quarter in challan CMP-08 and pay the tax.

Steps for Online GST Payment

To make the GST payment post-login to the GST Portal once the challan is generated, perform the following steps:

  • Access the https://www.gst.gov.in/URL. The GST Home page is displayed
  • Login to the GST Portal with valid credentials
  • Access the generated challan. Click the Services > Payments > Challan History command
  • Select the CPIN link for which you want to make the payment

Note: In case you don’t know the CPIN number, you can select the Search By Date option to search the CPIN number by the date on which it was generated.

  • Select the Mode of E-Payment
  • In the case of Net Banking
    1. Select the bank through which you want to make the payment
    2. Select the checkbox for terms and conditions to apply
    3. Click the make payment button
  • In the case of Credit/ Debit Cards
    1. Please select a payment gateway, select the payment gateway option
    2. Select the checkbox for terms and conditions apply
    3. Click the make payment button

Steps for Offline GST Payment

In the case of Over the Counter

  • In the payment modes option, select the over the counter as a payment mode
  • Select the name of the bank where cash or instrument is proposed to be deposited
  • Select the type of instrument as cash/cheque/demand draft
  • Click the generate challan button
  • Take a printout of the challan and visit the selected Bank
  • Pay using cash/cheque/demand draft within the challan’s validity period
  • The status of the payment will be updated on the GST Portal after confirmation from the bank.

Steps for GST Payment Through NEFT/RTGS

In the case of NEFT/ RTGS

  • In the payment modes option, select the NEFT/RTGS as a payment mode
  • In the remitting bank drop-down list, select the name of the remitting bank
  • Click the generate challan button
  • Take a printout of the challan and visit the selected Bank. Mandate forms will also be generated simultaneously
  • Pay using Cheque through your account with the selected bank/branch. You can also pay using the account debit facility
  • The transaction will be processed by the bank and RBI shall confirm the same within <2 hours>
  • Once you receive the Unique Transaction Number (UTR) on your registered e-mail or mobile number, you can link the UTR with the NEFT/RTGS CPIN on the GST Portal. Go to challan history and click the CPIN link. Enter the UTR and link it with the NEFT/RTGS payment
  • The status of the payment will be updated on the GST portal after confirmation from the bank
  • The payment will be updated in the electronic cash ledger in respective minor/major heads.

Penalty On Late Payment Of GST

When you miss the due date for returns, a late fee of ₹50/day (₹25 each for CGST and SGST) is to be paid if you have a tax liability. If you don’t have tax liability the late fee is ₹20/day. ₹5000/- is the cap on the late fee. In case of delay in annual return filing (GSTR-9), the late fee is ₹200/day (₹100 each for CGST and SGST).

GST Return Filing Glossary


It is the tax collected by the central government on intra-state sales.


The tax collected by the state government on intra-state sales.


The tax collected by the central government for an inter-state sale.


Union Territory Goods and Services Tax – A part of GST which is levied by the Union Government.


Goods and Services Tax Identification Number/GST registration number is a unique 15-character identity number given to the businesses that register for GST.


GST Return (GSTR) is a document capturing the details of the income, which a taxpayer is supposed to file with the authorities to calculate his tax liability. There are a total of 11 types of GST returns.


Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN) is a non-profit, public-private partnership company that provides IT infrastructure and services for the implementation of GST.


Input tax credit [ITC] is the credit a taxable person receives for paying input taxes towards inputs used for his business.

GST Invoice

The GST invoice is issued by the person who is supplying goods and services. It includes the details of the sale and the seller’s GSTIN.

HSN Code

HSN code is a 6-digit uniform code that classifies 5000+ products and is accepted worldwide. HSN stands for Harmonized System of Nomenclature.

SAC Code

SAC code is a code used to classify services under GST. Each service has a unique SAC code.

Aggregate turnover

Aggregate turnover is the total value of all taxable supplies and it is used to determine the threshold for GST.

Taxable person

A taxable person is any individual engaged in economic activity in India and who is or is required to be registered under GST.

GST Compliance Rating

GST Compliance Rating is a score between [0 -10] assigned to all the taxpayers, that depicts their GST compliance.

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