An Accessible guide to GST Invoices and their Format

In July 2017, India implemented the Goods and Services Tax (GST) to combat the ever-increasing and cascading effect of the taxes under the old tax structure that was put in place. Given how difficult it is to calculate your taxes and file them properly, you need to have a record of all the transaction-related details from top to bottom. If you are a product or service provider, you will have to follow a reporting system with the GST invoice format in place. This article will help you navigate the subject of GST invoices.

What is GST?

Before we talk about GST invoices and the GST invoice format in excel and everything else, you need to know a thing or two about GST. GST is an Indirect Tax implemented to subsume a plethora of Indirect Taxes in India. In simple words, the GST is an Indirect Tax levied on the supply of taxable goods and services in the entire country.

What is a GST Invoice?

A GST invoice is a list of the goods or services in question along with the compensation that the consumer has to make for said goods and services. If you have completed an online GST registration for your business, you will have to give GST-compliant invoices to your clients to buy or sell goods or services.

Why do you require a GST Invoice?

Suppliers generally inform the buyers to make the necessary payments using a GST invoice. A GST invoice also supports your claim for the Input Tax Credit (ITC) of the GST incurred. There are a few reasons why a GST invoice is vital:

  • You need to have a GST invoice to find out the address of delivery.
  • You need an invoice to pinpoint the precise time at which the goods or services would be provided.
  • You need to have a GST invoice to apply the goods and services tax if there is a variation in the GST tax rates.
  • Finally, you need one to determine the value of the services or goods in question.

Which are the fields that you need to fill on a GST invoice?

If you are done with your GST registration process, you will be obligated to provide your clients with a GST invoice to make sure that your transactions are transparent. Here is the list of important fields to be filled:

  • Customer name
  • GST Invoice number and date of issuance
  • Customer’s GST number
  • Supply location
  • Shipping and billing address of the customer
  • The tax rates and amount
  • Whether or not reverse charge under GST is applicable
  • Information on the item being shipped, such as quantity, product description, unit, and the total value of the product
  • Any taxable discounts that are valid
  • The Harmonized System of Nomenclature (HSN) code or the Service Accounting Code (SAC)
  • Supplier’s signature

How to issue GST Invoice for the Supply of Goods?

You will have to make sure you issue a GST invoice in the following situations:

  • While removing the goods when the supply of goods involves moving them
  • When goods are delivered to the customer, and the supply of goods does not require them to be moved.
  • When an account payment is sanctioned, and there is a continuous supply of goods

Which copies of the GST Invoice do you need to issue for Goods?

Here are the three copies of the GST invoice that you need to issue for goods:

Original invoice

You will have to issue the original GST invoice to the receiver and mark it as ‘Original for recipient.’

Duplicate copy

You will have to issue the duplicate copy to the transporter and mark this copy as ‘Duplicate for transporter.’

Triplicate copy

The supplier will keep this copy and mark it as ‘Triplicate for supplier.’

When is it not required to issue a GST Invoice?

Remember that you are not liable to issue a GST invoice if the goods or services that you are dealing in are less than Rs. 200 in value, or if the recipient is not registered or does not require a GST invoice.