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As the GST regime stormed the nation with its new and evolving procedures, pertinent doubts in the minds of taxpayers were inevitable. Registrations, refunds, returns, and other aspects of compliances under GST puts the taxpayer in a confusing spot.

 In that regard, the Government unfolded the concept of GST Practitioners, who could assist and act as representatives for their taxpaying clients. If you are wondering how to become a GST Practitioner, this is the right place for you to learn. You can learn about the top ten things to learn during a CA Articleship here.

Let us unravel the eligibility, qualifications, roles, and responsibilities paragraph by paragraph, leading you to the final concept of becoming a GST practitioner.

Who is a GST Practitioner?

GST PRactitioner is a learned person, authorized by the Central or State government to perform the GST-related activities for the taxpayers. These exercises are as follows:

  1. Registration: On behalf of the taxpayer, the GST practitioner can apply for registration, amendments, or cancellation of the registration.
  2. Returns: Filing for returns using Form GSTR – 1, GSTR – 3B, and GSTR – 9. These could be monthly, quarterly, or yearly returns.
  3. Refunds: Filing for refunds and tax credits is another thing the practitioner does for the clients.
  4. Authorized Representative: The practitioner is authorized to show up as authorized representative before GST Department, Appellate authority, and Tribunal.

Eligibility to become a GST Practitioner

Following are the pre-requisites to becoming a GST Practitioner:

  • One must be a citizen of India
  • The candidate should have a sound mind
  • The candidate should not be adjudged as insolvent
  • The candidate must not be convicted with an imprisonment of 2 or more years.

Qualifications to become a GST Practitioner

  • A retired officer from the Commercial Tax department of any state govt.
  • A retired officer from CBIC (worked as a GRoup-B or higher post gazetted officer for no less than two years.
  • Tax return Preparer or Sales Tax Practitioner for a minimum of five years.
  • Graduate or Postgraduate in Commerce, banking, law, business administration, and business management from a recognized Indian or Foreign University.
  • Advocates
  • Chartered Accountants holding Certificate of Practice (COP)
  • Company Secretary holding COP
  • Cost Accountant holding COP

Roles and Responsibilities of a GST Practitioner

A GST Practitioner is entitled to fulfill the following roles and responsibilities for their taxpayer clients:

  • Applying for registration or cancellation of GST registration.
  •  Applying for a retreat from composition levy
  • Viewing e-ledgers and credit ledgers
  • Applying for various forms such as GSTR 1, GSTR-3B, GSTR 4, CMP-08, ITC-04, and more.
  • Refund claims
  • Applications for advance rulings, DRC-03, and LUT
  • Seeing GST notices
  • Appear as an authorized representative

How to become a GST Practitioner?

First things first, to become a GST Practitioner, you have to expand your knowledge spectrum about goods and services, GST regime, registration, refunds, and other compliances under GST. You can acquire that information through a GST Course with certification that is available in both online as well as offline institutes.

Post-acquisition of knowledge, the next step is to register as GST at GST Portal. Once you have registered yourself as GST Practitioner at www.gst.gov.in, you must pass the GST examination within two years of registration.

Taking into account the value of work that a GST practitioner does, enrollment and examination are substantial components before beginning to start own practice. This certification called GSTP- escalates the trust level and credibility of the service provider in his taxpayer.

The process of Registration

The two-step process is explained in detail below:

1.Visit the GST portal and fill in Form PCT-01 and PCT-02 as GST Practitioner. Fill in your necessary details, which will direct you towards an OTP verification. Verify through your registered mobile number and ensure your details are correct. Then, GSTN will generate a temporary reference number or TRN.

Moving ahead, upload all the required documents on the website and submit the application. There are two ways for submitting an application, which are:

a) DSC- You can submit the application using a DSC token. For that, you must have an emSigner from eMudra installed on your laptop or computer.

b) e-signature or EVC- For this process, you receive two OTP- one on the Aadhar-registered mobile number, and the second one on your registered email ID. You have to submit both the OTP to proceed with the application.

On submission, a success message displays on the screen. Also, within 15 days’ time, you will receive a confirmation mail on your registered email ID.

2.The second part involves the examination, which you have to clear within two years of enrollment. The GSTP examination is conducted by NACIN and you have to pay the requisite fee for that.

You have to score a minimum of 50% to qualify for the examination as a certified GST practitioner. After that, your name appears on the list of enrolled GSTP’s at GST common portal for the taxpayers to make a canny choice.

Congratulations! once you have accomplished all these steps, you have become a certified GST practitioner who is authorized under the Government of India to practice GST compliances for the taxpayers of the nation.

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