Responsibilities of a GST-Registered Business in Singapore

In Singapore, GST registration is compulsory if your company’s taxable turnover exceeds S$1 million for the past 12 months or expects to exceed S$1 million in the next 12 months. A GST-registered business is required to fulfill responsibilities from the effective date of GST registration. Here are the responsibilities that your business needs to fulfil after registering GST.

1. Charge and account for GST on Standard-Rated Supplies

If your business is a GST – registered one in Singapore, your goods and services will be charged for a GST tax rate of 7% which is standard in Singapore. You, on behalf of IRAS, will collect an amount of GST tax based on supplies of goods and services.

However, if you make relevant supplies [i.e. local sales of prescribed goods (mobile phones, memory cards, and off-the-shelf software) exceeding $10,000 in value] that are subject to customer accounting, you must not charge GST to your GST-registered customer. Your GST-registered customer receiving the relevant supply will need to account for the GST (as his output tax) instead.

2. e-File GST Returns and Pay Tax Due

It is statutory to file accurate GST returns and pay the tax due on time.

· Filing GST Returns on time

It is required to submit all GST returns via e-Filing (myTax Portal) within one month from the end of each accounting period, even if there is no transaction in the last accounting period and your business taxable turnover is NIL. Note: both output tax (the GST collected from customers) and input tax (the GST paid to suppliers) are reported to IRAS in the GST returns.

· Penalties for filing late or not filing GST returns

From 1 April 2018 onwards, IRAS may impose a penalty of $200 to late and/ or non-filling of GST returns businesses. However, if the GST F5/F8 return is continued to outstanding for every completed month, IRAS will continue to be imposed a penalty of $200 (up to a maximum of $10,000).

Besides, IRAS may issue an estimated assessment of the tax due and the amount is subject to late payment penalties. The estimated assessment and late payment penalties will only be revised upon receipt of the overdue GST return.

As known, failure to e-File is an offense punishable with a fine up to $5,000 and in default of payment, an imprisonment term up to six months.

· Paying GST Due on time

You must pay GST within one month from the end of each accounting period. It means that you will fill GST returns via e-Filling to IRAS and pay GST at the same period time.

· Penalties for paying late or not paying GST

Late or not payment GST on a due date results in a 5% penalty levied on the amount of tax unpaid by the due date. However, if your business continues to unpaid, IRAS will impose an additional penalty of 2% per month on tax remaining unpaid after 60 days from the due date of the prescribed accounting period. (subject to a maximum of 50% of the outstanding tax)

3. Administrative requirements

Keeping business and accounting Records

You need to keep all business and accounting records for at least five years, even if your business ceased or is deregistered from GST.

Notifying IRAS of Changes

When there are any changes to your business including GST mailing address, business constitution or ownership and partner (s) or particulars of partner (s), it is needed to inform the Comptroller within 30 days after any change.

Displaying prices with GST

Any price displays, advertisements, publications or quotations in respect of goods or services made to the public must be inclusive of GST. If both GST-inclusive and GST-exclusive prices are displayed, the GST-inclusive price must be at least as prominent as the GST-exclusive price. Failure to comply with each of these requirements may result in a fine of up to $5,000.

Issue tax invoices with GST registration number

Tax invoices or customer accounting tax invoices for your standard-rated supplies are required to issue. If the total amount payable for your supply (including GST) does not exceed $1,000, you may issue a simplified tax invoice.

Your GST Registration Number should be reflected on all your tax invoices, simplified tax invoices, and receipts.

Accounting for GST at Point of De-Registration

When your GST registration is cancelled, you need to account for GST on business assets held on the last day of registration if GST was previously claimed on their purchase and the total market value of these business assets is more than $10,000.

These assets include inventories, fixed assets, non-residential properties and goods imported under the various GST schemes.

4. Obligations for Voluntary Registrants

In case you are a voluntary GST registration, you have to:

  1. Use GIRO for payment and refund of GST;
  2. Remain GST-registered for at least two years;
  3. Comply fully with the responsibilities of a GST-registered business;
  4. Make taxable supplies within two yearsif you have not started making taxable supplies at the point of applying for GST registration; and
  5. Any other conditions as may be imposed by IRAS. (Note: the Comptroller may cancel the voluntary GST registration when any of the conditions are not met)

Source: Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS)

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