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Time period for retention of records under GST

Section 36 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 (CGST Act), talks about the time period for retention of books of accounts and other records under GST by a registered person. This section states that every registered person is required to retain books of accounts and other records until the expiry of 72 months i.e. 6 years from the due date of furnishing of annual return.

Section 36 of CGST Act also states that, if a registered person is a party of any appeal, revision or any other proceedings before any authority or tribunal or court, then they have to retain such books of accounts and other records until for a period of one year after final disposal of such matter.

So every registered person under GST is required to retain books of accounts and other records until the expiry of 72 months or 6 years from the due date of furnishing of annual return in form GSTR-9 or until the expiry of 1 year from the date of final disposal of any appeal, revision or any other proceedings, whichever is later.

What is the last date till a registered person is required to retain books of accounts and other records for FY 2017-18 and FY 2018-19?

Since due date of filing of annual return in form GSTR-9 for FY 2017-18 is extended till the month of February 2020 (i.e. 03rd, 05th and 07th February 2020), every registered person is required to retain books of accounts and other records till the month of February 2026.

Further for FY 2018-19, the due date of filing of annual return in form GSTR-9 is extended till 30.06.2020, every registered person is required to retain books of accounts and other records till the date of 30.06.2026. (If the due date of GSTR-9 will not get extended.)

Further, in case a registered person is a party of any appeal or revision or any other proceedings under GST, then they are required to retain books of accounts and other records till the expiry of one year from final disposal of that matter or six years from the due date of furnishing of annual return, whichever is later.

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