What is an E-way Bill ?

E-way Bill stands for electronic way bil. The E-way Bill system was introduced on April 1st, 2018 as a part of the rollout of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime. Under the E-way Bill system, a person needs to generate an E-way Bill from the GST portal if he/she desires to transport a consignment valued at over Rs. 50,000 across state borders.  The E-way Bill system was introduced to implement stricter and more rigorous compliance with the GST regime and to ensure that registered businesses file their GST returns regularly.

Changes Introduced in the  E-way Bill System

From January 2020, the following  new changes have been introduced in the E-way Bill system:

  1. A  person who has not filed their GST returns for two consecutive quarters will find the E-way Bill generation facility blocked until they file their pending returns.

 

  1. A new e-invoicing system has  been proposed that will issue invoices through the GST network itself, instead of businesses having to generate their own invoices through their accounting softwares.

How Can an E-way Bill be Generated?

E-way Bill can be generated through the following steps:

  1. Log on to the E-way Bill portal
  2. Click on the Generate New tab on the top-left corner.
  3. Fill in the transaction details depending on whether the movement of goods is “outward” or “inward”.
  4. Enter the description of the goods along with the product name as mentioned in your tax invoice. Enter the distance to the destination as well as its HSN Code.
  5. Click on submit to generate the E-way Bill.

What if I Get an Error While Generating E-way Bill?

Though the E-way Bill system has been implemented smoothly, sometimes a user may see an error while generating their E-way Bill. Some of the most common E-way Bill errors are:

  1. Invalid Vehicle Number Format – The accepted format for entering vehicle numbers on the E-way Bill portal is AB121234. The system does not accept numbers in a format where 0 is omitted. For instance, a case where a vehicle number is PB 2 1234J needs to be entered as PB02 1234J.

 

  1. Incorrect User ID – Often taxpayers create a new user ID each time they need to generate an E-way Bill. This leads to incorrect user IDs being entered.
  2. Multiple Invoices – For a single E-way Bill, only one invoice is accepted by the portal. Thus in a case where a user tries to upload multiple invoices against a single E-way Bill, the portal will show an error.

 

  1. Transporter ID Not Given – In cases where the user is using a third-party transporter, it often happens that the user omits to provide the Transporter ID. It is mandatory to give the Transporter ID and vehicle number even when a third-party transporter has been used.

 

 

  1. Incorrect Documents Uploaded – It is essential that all uploaded documents should match with the consignment being transported and the vehicle being used for transportation. Any mismatch in the particulars will lead to a GST E-way Bill error.

These are some of the most common E-way Bill generation errors. For a complete list of errors, see the E-way Bill error code list.

Conclusion

E-way Bill is a useful system implemented under the GST framework that has greatly streamlined the logistics and transportation process. With the new changes introduced in 2020, users are required to be up to date with their tax filings on the GST portal as failure to do so can result in inability to generate E-way Bill.