In case a GST registered person or entity is not satisfied GST penalties order or decision passed by a tax authority/official or in case of any dispute related to tax liabilities, he has the option to appeal.
Under GST Act, there is an appeals process and different appellate authorities that has been specified.
GST (First) Appellate Authority
Eligible person: Any person not satisfied and seeking redress against an order passed by the adjudicating authority.
Time limit for filing an Appeal: Appeals under GST can be filed by the taxpayer within a period of 3 months from the date on which the decision or communication order passed by the adjudicating authority (GST Officer).
Pre conditions of appeal: An appellant seeking for appeal would be required to pay the GST tax, interest, fine and penalty as admitted by him and deposit a minimum of 10% of the remaining amount in tax dispute raised in the order.
Appeal by GST Commissioner: Once an appeal is filed by the appellant, the GST Commissioner can file an application before the Appellate Authority within six months from the date of communication of decision or order in Form GST APL – 03 electronically and Appellate Authority will issue a final acknowledgement, along with appeal number through form GST APL-02.
Adjournment of hearing: A maximum of 3 adjournments will be granted to a party on showing reasonable cause to be recorded in writing.
Time limit of decision: The First Appellate Authority must issue the order within one year from the date on which the appeal is filed.
Decision of appeal: On conclusion of the appeal process, the Appellate Authority will issue an order with a summary of the order in FORM GST APL-04 clearly indicating the final amount of demand confirmed.
Communication of decision: When the First Appellate Authority gives passes its order or decision, it needs to communicate it to the following parties by sending a copy of the order to them:
- the appellant
- the Respondent
- the Adjudicating Authority
- the Jurisdictional Commissioner of Central and State or UT
Revisional Authority (RA)
The Revisional Authority can, on his own, or on request from the Commissioner of State Tax or UT Tax, examine the records of any proceeding.
Records that can be examined by Revisional Authority when any decision by any subordinate officer is-
- Prejudicial to the interest of the revenue
- Illegal or
- Improper or
- Not taking into account certain material facts(whether or not available at the time of issuance of the order) or
- An observation was made by the CAG
Decision by RA: If he thinks it necessary, he can stay the order for a time period as he deems fit. The person concerned will be given an opportunity of being heard.
However, in the following cases Revision is not allowed:
- The order is subject to appeal
- 6 months have not passed from the date of order (i.e., there is time left for appeal)
- More than three years have passed after the date of order
- The order has already been taken for revision
Time limit of passing an order: The Chief Commissioner or Commissioner can pass an order on any point which has not been raised in any appeal. Such order must be passed before one year from the date of the appeal order or before three years.
If the order is stayed by the order of a Court or Tribunal, the period of the stay will be excluded.
GST Appellate Tribunal
Eligible person: The GST appellate tribunal is formed to hear appeals against orders of the first appellate authority. Hence, any aggrieved person can file appeal here against the order of appellate authority
Time limit of filing appeal: An appeal to the Appellate Tribunal can be filed online, within three months of passing an order. Appeal to Appellate Tribunal must be filed in Form GST APL 05 along with a fee of Rs.10,000 for every 1 lakh of tax amount in dispute.
Production of additional evidences: The taxpayer will not be allowed to produce any evidence which was not presented to the adjudicating authority or the Appellate Authority during the proceedings, unless:
- The adjudicating authority or the Appellate Authority has refused to admit evidence, which ought to have been admitted; or
- The appellant was prevented by sufficient cause from producing the evidence which he was called upon to produce by the adjudicating authority or, as the case may be, the Appellate Authority;
- The appellant was prevented by sufficient cause from producing before the adjudicating authority or, as the case may be, the Appellate Authority any evidence which is relevant to any ground of appeal;
- The adjudicating authority or, the Appellate Authority has made the order appealed against without giving sufficient opportunity to the appellant to adduce evidence relevant to any ground of appeal.
Powers of Appellate Tribunal:
- Appellate Tribunal’s can refuse to admit an appeal, in case the disputed tax amount or input tax credit or the difference in tax or input tax credit involved or amount of fine, fees or penalty ordered does not exceed Rs.50,000.
- It has powers to confirm, modify or annul a decision or order.
- The Appellate Tribunal also has the power to remand the case back to the appellate authority or the Revisional Authority or the original adjudicating authority.
Appeal to High Court
Eligible person: Any person unhappy with the decision of the Appellate Tribunal can appeal to the High Court
Time limit to file an Appeal: Within 6 months from the date of the order.
Admission of an appeal: The High Court may admit an appeal involving a substantial question of law on any issue which has not been determined or wrongly determined by the State Bench or Area Benches.
However, no appeal can be filed with the High Court if an order is passed by National Bench or Regional Benches.
Precondition to file an appeal: To file an appeal before the High Court, an appeal memorandum must be filed, precisely stating the substantial question of law involved
Time limit to file appeal: Within 180 days from the date of receipt of order appealed against.
Appeal to Supreme Court
Any person unhappy with the decisions of High Court, National Bench or Regional Benches can appeal to the Supreme Court if the High Court certifies to be fit for appeal to the Supreme Court.