FAQs of GSTR-9A Offline Utility

  • About GSTR-9A Offline Utility

  • Download GSTR-9A Offline Utility

  • Worksheet Tabs in GSTR-9A Offline Utility

  • Entering Details in Offline Utility

  • Download the Generated JSON File

  • Upload the Generated JSON File

  • Download Error JSON File

About GSTR-9A Offline Utility

1. What is Form GSTR-9A Offline Utility?

  • GSTR-9A Offline utility is an Excel-based tool to facilitate creation of annual return in Form GSTR9A, which is to be filed on the GST portal by taxpayers who have opted for composition scheme, for any period during the said financial year.

  • Taxpayers may use the offline utility to furnish various details regarding outward supplies, inward supplies, taxes paid, any refund claimed or input tax credit availed or reversed due to opting out or opting in to composition scheme etc.

  • Once return is prepared using offline utility, it is to be uploaded on GST Portal by creating a JSON file and then you can make payment of late fees, sign it and file it.

2. What are the features of GSTR-9A Offline Utility?

The Key Features of GSTR-9A Offline Utility are given below:

  • The GSTR-9A details of Table 6 to Table 16 can be prepared offline with no connection to Internet.

  • Most of the data entry and business validations are inbuilt in the offline utility reducing chances of errors upon upload to GST Portal.

3. Can I file Form GSTR-9A using Offline Utility?

No. Filing can take place only online on the GST Portal. Using Offline Utility, you will be able to open the system-computed Form GSTR-9A based on filed Form GSTR-4 for editing as well as to prepare details of Table 6 to Table 16 of Form GSTR-9A. Once you have uploaded the prepared details on the GST Portal, you must file return on the portal with your Login credentials.

4. What details in Form GSTR-9A can be entered by taxpayer using the Offline Utility?

Details for following Tables of GSTR-9A can be entered by taxpayer using the offline Tool:

  • Table 6: Details of outward supplies made during the financial year

  • Table 7: Details of inward supplies on which tax is payable on reverse charge basis (net of debit/credit notes) for the financial year

  • Table 8: Details of other inward supplies for the financial year

  • Table 9: Details of tax paid as declared in returns filed during the financial year

  • Table 10: Supplies / tax (outward) declared through amendments (+) (net of debit notes)

  • Table 11: Inward supplies liable to reverse charge declared through amendments (+) (net of debit notes)

  • Table 12: Supplies / tax (outward) reduced through amendments (-) (net of credit notes)

  • Table 13: Inward supplies liable to reverse charge reduced through amendments (-) (net of credit notes)

  • Table 14: Differential tax paid on account of declaration made in 10,11,12 & 13 above

  • Table 15: Particulars of Demands and Refunds

  • Table 16: Details of credit reversed and availed Download GSTR-9A Offline Utility

Download GSTR-9A Offline Utility

5. From where can I download and use the GSTR-9A Offline Utility in my system?

To download and open the GSTR-9A Offline Utility in your system from the GST Portal, perform following steps:

  1. Access the GST Portal: www.gst.gov.in.

  2. Go to Downloads > Offline Tools > GSTR-9A Offline Tool option and click on it.

  3. Unzip the downloaded Zip file which contain GSTR_9A_Offline_Utility.xls excel sheet.

  4. Open the GSTR_9A_Offline_Utility.xls excel sheet by double clicking on it.

  5. Read the ‘Read Me’ instructions on excel sheet and then fill the worksheet accordingly.

Note: Downloading the GSTR-9A Offline utility is a one-time activity. However, the utility may get updated in future. So, always use the latest version available on the GST Portal.

6. Do I need to login to GST Portal to download the GSTR-9A Offline Utility?

No. You can download the GSTR-9A Offline Utility under ‘Downloads’ section without logging in to the GST Portal.

7. What are the basic system requirements/configurations required to use GSTR-9A Offline Tool?

The offline functions work best on Windows 7 and above and MS EXCEL 2007 and above.

8. Is Offline utility mobile compatible?

As of now GSTR-9A Offline utility cannot be used on mobile. It can only be used on desktop/laptops.

Worksheet Tabs in GSTR-9A Offline Utility

9. How many worksheet-tabs are there in GSTR-9A Offline Utility

There are 5 worksheet-tabs in GSTR-9A Offline Utility. These are:

  1. Read Me

  2. Home

  3. Pt. II. Details of outward and inward supplies made during the financial year

  4. Pt. III. Details of tax paid as declared in returns filed during the financial year

  5. Pt. IV. Particulars of the transactions for the previous FY declared in returns of April to September of current FY or upto date of filing of annual return of previous FY whichever is earlier

  6. Pt. V. Other Information

10. What is the use of Read Me worksheet-tab?

The Read Me sheet contains Introduction and help instructions for you to read and use them to easily fill data in GSTR-9A Offline Utility.

11. What is “Go Home” button?

On click of ‘Go Home’, offline utility navigates to the Home sheet

12. What is “Validate Sheet” button?

After entering the data in each sheet, you must click on ‘Validate Sheet’ button to validate the records. If there are any errors then those errors will be displayed in ‘Sheet validation errors’ column. You must correct these errors before you move to next sheet or generate JSON file to upload.

13. What is the use of Home worksheet-tab?

The Home sheet is the main page of the utility. It is used to perform following 4 functions:

  1. Enter mandatory details— GSTIN and Financial Year — without entering these details you will not be able to validate the data which you entered in various worksheets and also you will not be able to import the JSON file into the offline utility.

  2. Generate JSON file, for upload of GSTR-9A return details prepared offline on GST portal, using Generate JSON File to upload button.

  3. Import and open Error JSON File downloaded from GST portal using Open Downloaded Error JSON Files button.

  4. Import and open JSON File downloaded from GST portal using Open Downloaded GSTR-9A JSON File button.

14. What is the use of ‘Pt II’ worksheet-tab?

The Pt II sheet contains Table 6, 7 and 8. It is used to perform following 3 functions:

  1. Enter details of outward supplies made during the financial year, details of inward supplies on which tax is payable on reverse charge basis (net of debit/credit notes) for the financial year and details of other inward supplies for the financial year.

  2. Validate the entered details using the Validate Sheet button.

  3. Navigate to the Home page by clicking on the Go Home button or navigate to the next sheet

15. What is the use of ‘Pt III’ worksheet-tab?

The Pt III sheet contains Table 9. It is used to perform following 3 functions:

  1. Enter details of total tax payable during the financial year. Tax paid details are systemcomputed based on amount paid during the financial year in form GSTR-4.

  2. Validate the entered details using the Validate Sheet button.

  3. Navigate to the Home page by clicking on the Go Home button or navigate to the next sheet

16. What is the use of ‘Pt IV’ worksheet-tab?

The Pt IV sheet contains Table 10, 11, 12, 13 and 14. It is used to perform following 3 functions:

  1. In Table 10, 11, 12 and 13, enter particulars of the transactions for the previous FY declared in returns of April to September of current FY ( or as allowed by Government) or up to date of filing of annual return of previous FY whichever is earlier.

  2. In table 14, enter the difference in tax payable and tax paid due to the amendments entered in Table 10, 11, 12 and 13.

  3. Validate the entered details using the Validate Sheet button.

  4. Navigate to the Home page by clicking on the Go Home button or navigate to the next sheet

17. What is the use of ‘Pt V’ worksheet-tab?

The Pt V sheet contains Table 15 and 16. It is used to perform following 3 functions:

  1. In Table 15, enter particulars of Demands and Refunds.

  2. In table 16, enter particulars of credit reversed or availed.

  3. Validate the entered details using the Validate Sheet button.

  4. Navigate to the Home page by clicking on the Go Home button or navigate to the next sheet

Entering Details in Offline Utility

18. How can I prepare details in Offline Utility?

For preparing details in Offline Utility, you will have two options:

  • Either download the utility from GST Portal and fill up required details, create JSON file and then upload it on the GST Portal

  • Download the JSON file from the Portal containing system computed details of Form GSTR-9A and import it/ open it into the offline tool and then edit it. All the entries will be editable except tax paid in Table 9 which will be prefilled and non-enterable.

19. Can the offline utility populate name of the taxpayer based on GSTIN in “Home” Sheet?

No, the offline utility cannot populate name of the taxpayer based on GSTIN, as details will not be there to fetch name of the taxpayer in Excel/offline utility. However, it can validate structure of GSTIN when GSTIN is entered in “Home” sheet of Offline utility.

20. Can I enter negative or decimal amounts in the offline utility?

Yes, you can enter any negative value and decimal values in the offline utility.

21. Can the offline utility validate all details entered in it?

No, the offline utility will not be able to validate all the details as it would have no connection with GST portal at the time of data entry. Only limited validations would be available in the offline utility tool, namely: GSTIN structure, type of tax etc.

22. After clicking “Validate Sheet” button, I can see cells highlighted in red and “Sheet Validation” column only shows “Error in row”. How I can know details about the error?

Point your mouse-cursor on each of the red-highlighted cells to read the error description of each cell. A yellow description box will appear. Correct the errors as mentioned in the description box. Alternatively, click Review > Show All Comments link in the ribbon-tab of the excel to view all the comments together.

23. When will I be able to validate all details entered in the offline utility?

Most of the validations are made available in the offline tool itself on click of “validate sheet” button. The validations that have dependency of online connectivity like GSTIN validation would be done at the time of upload of JSON File created using offline tool.

Download the Generated JSON File

24. Why do I need to download the generated JSON file from the GST Portal?

Generated JSON file needs to be downloaded to open the system-computed Form GSTR-9A data based on filed Form GSTR-4 for editing as well as to prepare details of Table 6 to Table 16 of Form GSTR-9A in the Offline Tool.

25. Do I need to login to GST Portal to download the generated JSON file using GSTR-9A Offline Utility?

Yes. You must login in to the GST Portal to download the generated JSON file using GSTR-9A Offline Utility.

Upload the Generated JSON File

26. Do I need to login to GST Portal to upload the generated JSON file using GSTR-9A Offline Utility?

Yes. You must login in to the GST Portal to upload the generated JSON file using GSTR-9A Offline Utility.

27. I am uploading GSTR-9A JSON File again, after making changes. What will happen to details of the previous upload?

If some details exist from previous upload, all new details will be added as new entries. In case, some details exist from previous upload, it will be updated with latest uploaded details.

28. Can I generate the JSON file from the offline utility without entering any details in any sheet?

No. You can’t generate nil JSON file.

Download Error JSON File

29. What will the error report contain?

Error Report will contain only those entries that failed validation checks on the GST portal. The successfully-validated entries can be previewed online.

30. Does the downloaded Error JSON File contain all the entries I have uploaded on the GST Portal?

No, the downloaded Error JSON File contains only those entries for a specific table that has failed validation during upload on the GST portal.

31. I’ve uploaded GSTR-9A JSON File and it was processed without error. Do I need to download the generated file?

No, it is not necessary for you to download the GSTR-9A JSON File processed without error. You need to download it only if you want to view or update the details added previously.

32. Is there a list of key Dos and Don’ts we need to keep in mind while making entries in the utility?

Yes. Please refer to the following list of Dos and Don’ts for your easy reference.

Before Generating JSON File…
Do’sDon’ts
Enter a valid GSTIN very carefully. Verify GSTIN from the GST portal: Home > Search Taxpayer > Search by GSTIN/UIN, and make sure the GSTIN registration is activeDon’t type the alphabet ‘O’ in place of the number ‘0’.
You can use the Copy/Paste (Ctrl+C/Ctrl+V) keyboard functions while entering data in the utility.Don’t use the Cut (Ctrl+X) keyboard function while entering data in the utility.
----Don’t forget to click Validate Sheet button after making changes in any of the sheets
You may change the file name and location of the generated JSON file.Don’t change the extension (.json) of the generated JSON file.

For more FAQs related to GSTR-9A and Online filing of GSTR-9A on the GST Portal, please refer to GSTR-9A Online FAQs