Master GSTR-1 Filing for MSMEs: Easy Guide

18 Jul 2023

Complete Guide to Filing GSTR-1: GST Return Filing for MSMEs Made Easy

As an MSME owner, filing your taxes correctly and on time is crucial for a smooth business operation. The Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime in India requires businesses to file regular returns, and one of the most important returns is GSTR-1. In this comprehensive guide, we will take you through the entire process of GSTR-1 filing, making it hassle-free and straightforward.

What is GSTR-1?

GSTR-1 is a monthly or quarterly return that captures the details of outward supplies made by registered taxpayers. It contains information on sales, invoices, and other outward supplies to both registered and unregistered parties. GSTR-1 is essential for the proper reconciliation of input tax credit (ITC) and the tax liability of the recipients.

Understanding the GSTR-1 Format:

The GSTR-1 form consists of multiple tables that require different details. Let’s break down the format step-by-step:

1. Basic Details:

  • In this section, you need to provide your GSTIN (Goods and Services Taxpayer Identification Number), legal name, and trade name (if applicable).

2. Details of Outward Supplies:

  • This section comprises multiple tables for reporting different types of supplies:
    • Table 4: B2B (Business-to-Business) Invoices
    • Table 5: B2B Credit/Debit Notes
    • Table 6: B2C (Business-to-Consumer) Large Invoices
    • Table 7: B2C Small Invoices (State-wise)
    • Table 8: Export Invoices
    • Table 9: Tax Liability Under Reverse Charge Mechanism (RCM)
    • Table 10: Deemed Exports
    • Table 11: Credit/Debit Notes (Amendments to B2B)

3. Summary of Supplies:

  • This table provides a summary of the total outward supplies made during the period.

4. HSN (Harmonized System of Nomenclature) Summary:

  • Here, you need to furnish the HSN codes of goods and services along with their respective quantities and values.

5. Documents Issued:

  • This section requires details of invoices, debit/credit notes issued, and their amendments.

6. Amendments to B2B Invoices:

  • Any changes or corrections made to B2B invoices previously reported must be listed here.

Due Date and Late Fee for GSTR-1 Filing:

The due date for filing GSTR-1 depends on whether you opt for monthly or quarterly filing. For monthly filers, the due date is the 11th day of the following month, while quarterly filers must file by the 30th day of the subsequent quarter.

Late Fee:

  • Late filing of GSTR-1 attracts a penalty of Rs. 50 per day (Rs. 25 for CGST and Rs. 25 for SGST) of delay. The maximum penalty is capped at Rs. 5,000. Remember, filing late or not filing at all can also impact your input tax credit (ITC) claims.

Step-by-Step Guide to File GSTR-1:

Follow these steps to file GSTR-1 accurately and on time:

1. Organize Your Data:

  • Ensure all your sales invoices, debit/credit notes, and other relevant documents are up-to-date and properly organized. Using accounting software can significantly simplify this process.

2. Access the GST Portal:

  • Log in to the GST portal using your credentials.

3. Select GSTR-1:

  • From the dashboard, navigate to the “Services” tab and then select “Returns.” Next, choose “Returns Dashboard” and select the relevant tax period and GSTR-1.

4. Fill in the Details:

  • Enter the details of your outward supplies under the appropriate tables. Double-check all the information to avoid errors.

5. Preview and Submit:

  • Before final submission, review the form and ensure accuracy. Once verified, click on the “Preview” button. If everything is in order, proceed to submit the form.

6. File with EVC or DSC:

  • After successful validation, choose a suitable mode to file the return—either using an Electronic Verification Code (EVC) or a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC).

7. Acknowledgment and ARN:

  • Upon successful filing, you will receive an acknowledgment in the form of an Application Reference Number (ARN). Preserve this number for future reference.

Claiming Missing ITC in GSTR-3B:

After filing GSTR-1, your buyers can claim ITC based on the information you provided. However, if any invoices or details are inadvertently missed, rectification is possible through GSTR-3B in subsequent months.


Filing GSTR-1 is a crucial responsibility for MSMEs under the GST regime. Compliance with the correct format and timely submission is essential to avoid penalties and ensure the seamless flow of input tax credit. As an MSME owner, you should prioritize maintaining accurate records and adopting efficient accounting practices to simplify the GSTR-1 filing process.

By following the step-by-step guide in this blog, you can confidently and effortlessly file your GSTR-1 returns, promoting the growth and success of your MSME business in the long run.

Remember, staying compliant with GST regulations is not only a legal requirement but also a step towards building a transparent and accountable business in the eyes of the law. So, take charge of your GST filing today and stay ahead of the game!

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