GST on Advocate services challenged before Gujarat HC: notices issued


Writ petition filed before Hon’ble Gujarat High Court  challenging vires of of The Section 17(2) and 17(3) of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 & The Gujarat (State) Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 vis-à-vis Article 14, 19, 21 & 265 of the Constitution of India to be declared as void and unconstitutional.

The petition filed by Advocate Nipun Singhvi, challenged the provisions being violative as it restricts the credit of the input tax credit on goods / services or both used by Advocates for effecting taxable legal services and exempt legal services.

Counsel for the petitioner Advocate Vishal J. Dave submitted “That the tax to be paid by the litigant on taxable legal services in the absence of provision for availment of input tax credit by advocates is leading to the effect of cascading of  taxes since the tax component in the form of taxes on goods and services or both used by advocates including petitioner for providing the said taxable legal services becomes part of the cost of the advocates, which is passed on to the clients by way  of professional fee on which again GST is chargeable.”

The petitioner prayed for introducing mechanism for availing input tax credit on the expenses done with respect to goods and services availed by the advocates.

The petitioner who is qualified Chartered Accountant and a financial activist has been actively filing public interest litigation/writs significant among them are Demonetisation, Tribunals under Finance Act, 2017; GST provisions relating to AAR/AAAR and Appointment of Technical Member in NCLT.

Gujarat High Court issued notices to Centre, State and GST Council on Monday. Next date of hearing is fixed on 21.06.2018.

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