Rule 46 (b) of the CGST Rules 2017 suggests that any tax invoice should have a 16 character alpha-numeric invoice number unique for a financial year. This draws attention, now that we are entering a new Financial Year – 2022-2023.
GST Advisory on Invoice Number
GSTN had issued an advisory in this regard on 4th April 2019
As per the GST advisory, “Attention of all taxpayers is invited to Rule 46 (b) of the CGST Rules 2017, which specifies that the tax invoice issued by a registered person should have a consecutive serial number, not exceeding sixteen characters, in one or multiple series, containing alphabets or numerals or special characters – hyphen or dash and slash symbolized as “-” and “/” respectively, and any combination thereof, unique for a financial year.
Implication of GST Advisory on Invoice Number
This rule implies that with the start of new financial year 2022-23 (w.e.f. 01/04/2022), GST taxpayers should start a new invoice series, unique for the financial year. Similar provision is there in Rule 49 of the CGST Rules 2017, in respect of issue of Bill of Supply by registered taxpayers availing Composition Scheme or supplying exempted goods or services or both.
If the provisions of Rule 46 or Rule 49 are not adhered to, apart from being a compliance issue, taxpayers may face problem while generating E-Way Bill on E-way bill system or furnishing their Form GSTR 1 or for applying for refund on GST Portal. It is therefore necessary that suitable modification may be made by the taxpayers in this regard in their invoices or bill of supply, to avoid any inconvenience in the future.
Rule 46 of the CGST Rules 2017
The CHAPTER VI of the CGST Rules 2017 deals with the TAX INVOICE, CREDIT AND DEBIT NOTES preparation rules. Rule 46 under the same suggests that a registered person should issue a tax invoice containing the following particulars, namely,-
- Name, address and Goods and Services Tax Identification Number of the supplier;
- A consecutive serial number not exceeding sixteen characters, in one or multiple series, containing alphabets or numerals or special characters hyphen or dash and slash symbolized as “-” and “/” respectively, and any combination thereof, unique for a financial year;
- Date of its issue;
- Name, address and Goods and Services Tax Identification Number or Unique Identity Number, if registered, of the recipient;
- Harmonized System of Nomenclature code for goods or services;
- 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 un-registered and where the value of the taxable supply is fifty thousand rupees or more;
- Description of goods or services;
- 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 un-registered and where the value of the taxable supply is less than fifty thousand rupees and the recipient requests that such details be recorded in the tax invoice;
- Quantity in case of goods and unit or Unique Quantity Code thereof;
- Total value of supply of goods or services or both;
- Taxable value of the supply of goods or services or both taking into account discount or abatement, if any;
- Rate of tax (central tax, State tax, integrated tax, Union territory tax or cess);
- Amount of tax charged in respect of taxable goods or services (central tax, State tax, integrated tax, Union territory tax or cess);
- Place of supply along with the name of the State, in the case of a supply in the course of inter-State trade or commerce;
- Address of delivery where the same is different from the place of supply;
- Whether the tax is payable on reverse charge basis; and
- Signature or digital signature of the supplier or his authorized representative:
Importance of Resetting Invoice Number Series
This is important considering the fact that the entire GST system is based on the invoice number. The invoice number is the unique code for every transaction happening in the business. Also, the uniqueness has to be there to identify transactions for a particular Financial Year as well. Hence, it is advisable to reset your invoice numbers to 22-23 from 21-22. This will help to have invoice numbers unique to the financial year.
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