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Invoices & Records In Excise & Service Tax With Digital Signature

Khudos to our  digital savy Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi that finally the Budget 2015-2016 has incorporated the digital signature era in invoicing and records under central  excise and service tax .

Service Tax

Notification No. 5/2015-Service Tax dated 01.03.2015 prescribes the authentication of invoices by digital signature by way of introduction of Rule 4C and sub-rule (4) of Rule 5 in service Tax Rules ,1994


Rule 4C. Authentication by digital signature- (1) Any invoice, bill or challan issued under rule 4A or consignment note issued under rule 4B may be authenticated by means of a digital signature.

(2) The Board may, by notification, specify the conditions, safeguards and procedure to be followed by any person issuing digitally signed invoices.”;


“In Rule 5, sub-rule (4)

Records under this rule may be preserved in electronic form and every page of the record so preserved shall be authenticated by means of a digital signature.

(5) The Board may, by notification, specify the conditions, safeguards and procedure to be followed by an assessee preserving digitally signed records.

Explanation – For the purposes of rule 4C and sub-rule (4) and (5) of this rule,- (i) The expression “authenticate” shall have the same meaning as assigned in the Information Technology Act, 2000 (21 of 2000).


(ii) The expression “digital signature” shall have the meaning as defined in the Information Technology Act, 2000 (21 of 2000) and the expression “digitally signed” shall be construed accordingly.”

Note –

  1. manual signature will not be required rather a digital signature can be used for all authentications on the invoices .

  2. the records which are maintained electronically shall be preserved with  digital signature on each and every page of such    record.

  3. the  aforesaid provisions shall be effective from 1st March 2015.

Excise

Notification No. 8/2015- Central Excise (N.T.) New Delhi, the1st March, 2015 prescribes the authentication of invoices by digital signature by way of introduction of sub-rule (8) & (9) of Rule 11 in Central Excise Rules,2002

In Rule 11, Sub-rule(8) &(9)

 (8) An invoice issued under this rule by a manufacturer may be authenticated by means of a digital signature: Provided that where the duplicate copy of the invoice meant for transporter is digitally signed, a hard copy of the duplicate copy of the invoice meant for transporter and self attested by the manufacturer shall be used for transport of goods.

(9) The Board may, by notification, specify the conditions, safeguards and procedure to be followed by an assessee using digitally signed invoice.

Explanation. – For the purposes of rule 11 and this rule, the expressions, “authenticate”, “digital signature” and “electronic form” shall have the respective meanings as assigned to them in the Information Technology Act, 2000 (21 of 2000).

 

Note-

a. a manufacturer can authenticate invoices digitally but for transportation of excisable goods a self attested invoice shall also accompany with the goods as per sub-rule 8) of rule 11 of CER,2002.

b. The  aforesaid provisions shall be effective from 1st March 2015.

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