Sec 169 – Service of notice in certain circumstances

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Sec 169 – Service of notice in certain circumstances 2017-04-14T02:24:45+00:00

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  • Miloni ShahMiloni Shah
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    (1) Any decision, order, summons, notice or other communication under this Act or the rules made thereunder shall be served by any one of the following methods, namely:-
    (a) by giving or tendering it directly or by a messenger including a courier to the addressee or the taxable person or to his manager or authorised representative or an advocate or a tax practitioner holding authority to appear in the proceedings on behalf of the taxable person or to a person regularly employed by him in connection with the business, or to any adult member of family residing with the taxable person; or
    (b) by registered post or speed post or courier with acknowledgement due, to the person for whom it is intended or his authorised representative, if any, at his last known place of business or residence; or
    (c) by sending a communication to his e-mail address provided at the time of registration or as amended from time to time; or
    (d) by making it available on the common portal; or
    (e) by publication in a newspaper circulating in the locality in which the taxable person or the person to whom it is issued is last known to have resided, carried on business or personally worked for gain; or
    (f) if none of the modes aforesaid is practicable, by affixing it in some conspicuous place at his last known place of business or residence and if such mode is not practicable for any reason, then by affixing a copy thereof on the notice board of the office of the concerned officer or authority who or which passed such decision or order or issued such summons or notice.
    (2) Every decision, order, summons, notice or any communication shall be deemed to have been served on the date on which it is tendered or published or a copy thereof is affixed in the manner provided in sub-section (1).
    (3) When such decision, order, summons, notice or any communication is sent by registered post or speed post, it shall be deemed to have been received by the addressee at the expiry of the period normally taken by such post in transit unless the contrary is proved.

    Priya MadrechaPriya Madrecha
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    169.1  Introduction
    Service of communication is an essential step of any process of law. This Section details the mode of service that is considered valid. 169.2  Analysis
    (i)    Communication: Any decision, order, summons, notice or other communication under the Act or the rules.
    (ii)    Modes of Communication: The above documents can be served on the assessee in the following modes:
    (a)    Mode 1 – Physical Delivery:
         Giving or tendering it directly or
         Delivery through a messenger including a courier       The documents can be delivered to:
    (i)    The addressee / the taxpayer / to his manager /
    (ii)    The agent duly authorized / an advocate / a tax practitioner (who holds authority to appear in the proceeding on behalf of the taxpayer)/
    (iii)    A person regularly employed by him in connection with the business /
    (iv)    Any adult member of family residing with the taxpayer or
    (b)    Mode 2 – Regd. Post /speed post or Courier with acknowledgement due:
    It should be sent to intended person or his authorised representative at his last know place of business or residence.
    (c)    Mode 3 – Electronic Means
         Email or notifying in common portal (GSTN).
    (d)    Mode 4 – Media: Publication in a newspaper (in the locality in which the taxpayer or the person to whom it is issued is known to have resided, carried on business or personally worked for gain)
    (e)    Mode 5 – Other Modes: If above modes fail, then it can be served by
     Affixing it in some conspicuous place at his last known place of business or residence or
     If above mode is not practicable, service of notice can be by affixing a copy on the notice board of the officer or authority issuing such communication.  (iii) Date of service
     Normal Cases: The above communications shall be treated as served on the date on which it is tendered or published or a copy thereof is affixed (as mentioned above)
     Registered or Speed Post: If such communications are sent by registered/ speed post, it shall be treated as received by the addressee at the expiry of the normal period taken by such post in transit (unless the contrary is proved). 169.3 Comparative review
    The following are the major improvements / inclusions made in the GST Law as against the existing provisions available in Central Excise / Service Tax:
    Points of Distinction     Remarks
    New Modes of Service included      Delivery through a messenger including a courier
     Courier (no specific mention about whether it is approved by CBEC)
     Electronic Means (E-mail/common portal)
     Publication in Newspaper
    Additional Addressees (if main addressee is     Delivery through messenger or by courier to following persons are accepted:
    not available)     A person regularly employed by him in connection with the business /
    Any adult member of family residing with the taxpayer
    Deemed Delivery under registered post     A specific clause is added under the GST Law which indicates that if communications are sent by registered/speed post, it shall be treated as received by the addressee at the expiry of the normal period taken by such post in transit.
    Type of communication     The proposed Section covers any communication issued under the law.
    In the present Central Excise Law, Section 37C covers decision / order / summons / notice.
    Any communication might include intimation letters sent under the law, trade letters issued, acknowledgments issued etc.
    169.4 Related provisions
    Section 169 relates to all communications issued under the law and hence any communication given under any provision, shall be governed by this provision. 169.5 FAQs
    Q1. What are the approved modes of communication?
    Ans:  Physical Delivery, Registered Post, Courier, Email, common portal, publication in newspaper, affixing of notice on place of business or residence of the addressee, notice board of the Authority which has issued notice.
    Q2. If post is used but acknowledgment due is not given, is it approved?
    Ans:  Post with Acknowledgment due is essential to make it valid.
    Q3. If mail is sent to an invalid mail ID, is it valid?
    Ans: Mail sent to the last known Mail ID of the Addressee shall be considered valid communication. However, if the addressee is able to prove that such communication is not received by him, it can be invalid.
    Q4. Whether notice must be sent to the person intended and to his authorized agent also or any one of them is sufficient?
    Ans:  The provision provides that if the notice is sent by courier or physical delivery to the person to whom it is intended or his authorized agent, it is sufficient.
    Q5. Whether advertisement in local talks is considered valid service?
    Ans:  The provision provides that display in the newspaper shall be a valid service of notice. Hence, local talks prevalent in the place where the addressee normally resides or has place of business shall be treated as valid.

    169.6 MCQs
    Q1.     Among the following, which method is not approved?
    (a)    Post
    (b)    Courier
    (c)    Email
    (d)    Notice to Addressee’s Debtors
    Q2.     Among the following, to whom the notice cannot be served?
    (a)    Authorised Agent
    (b)    Family Member
    (c)    Employee
    (d)    Partner
    Q3.     In case of registered post, if acknowledgment is not received within time, what shall be the date of service of notice?
    (a)    Reasonable Time
    (b)    Not considered as delivered
    (c)    30 days from sending the registered post
    (d)    45 days from sending the registered post

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