All about GST and how to use the GST Portal

You’re probably here because you are running a business and want to understand the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, a tax structure that seems to have caused a considerable amount of confusion. GST was implemented in 2017 with the underlying principle of ‘One nation, one tax.’ The Goods and Services Tax was introduced to subsume the taxes under the previous tax structure and make it one indirect tax.

What are the advantages of GST?

As daunting as this system may seem to be, there are some advantages worth noting:

  • Before the Goods and Services Tax came to fruition, several taxes were levied at the local, state, and national levels. Different kinds of taxes were levied on different categories of goods and services, and these would differ with different states. Due to the implementation of GST, the single and comprehensive tax system led to the formation of a GST council that was fronted by the Union Finance minister.

  • As mentioned earlier, you would have to pay different kinds of taxes at different levels and stages. Examples of such stages include production, transportation, and selling. Taxation at stage led to a significant increase in the overall price. The customer would have to bear the brunt of paying taxes at each stage.

  • Before the implementation of GST, indirect taxes like excise duty, service tax, and Value Added Tax (VAT) had a major impact on the yearly turnover of companies. VAT would vary with each state. However, with the GST in place, there are new rules for registration, and relatively smaller traders and businesses can avoid paying GST until they reach a certain turnover threshold.

How do you go about GST online Registration?

The GST registration process is relatively straightforward, thanks to the GST portal online. Here’s how you go about the process:

  • Visit the GST portal online (www.gst.gov.in)
  • Login to the GST portal with your details
  • Click on the ‘Services’ tab and head over to ‘New Registration.’
  • Then, you will have to enter all the necessary details on the registration page like your Personal Account Number (PAN), email address, and mobile number. Click on ‘Proceed.’
  • Now, you will get a One Time Password (OTP) on the phone number and email address you’ve used for registration.
  • After you verify the details, you will receive a Temporary Reference Number
  • Open ‘Services,’ head over to ‘Registration,’ and click on ‘New Registration.’ Then select ‘TRN’ and enter the number you’ve received, the captcha code, and click on ‘Continue.’
  • You should get another OTP, after which you will be redirected to the ‘Saved Applications’ page. Be sure to fill in and submit your application within 15 days.
  • Click on the edit option and go to the next step.
  • You need to fill in your business details like the name of the business, location, and partners. You also need to include scanned copies of certain vital documents as you complete your GST registration process.
  • These are the documents you need – Proof of location of the business, proof of authorized signatory, proof of incorporation of the business, bank account number with IFSC, registration certificate of business, and the first page of the bank statement that shows the bank account number, account holder’s address, and the latest transactions.
  • Click on ‘Save’ and then continue to make sure all the information you’ve submitted remains saved.

You may submit your GST application in the following ways:

  • Verification via the Digital Signature Certificate
  • Verification using the e-signature
  • Verification using the Electronic Verification Code (EVC)

After you complete the GST verification process, you will receive an Application Reference Number (ARN) in your email inbox and on your phone.

How to Track GST application status?

You may use your ARN for GST tracking. Head to the GST portal online, click on the services tab, go to registration, and select the option that says track application status.

If the status shows ‘Approved,’ you will receive an email with the GST number. You will receive a temporary username and password for the first time you log in. After you sign in, you can edit your username and password.

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