Online filing of Central Excise and Service Tax returns was made mandatory from 1st of October 2011. Before this change, only assessees paying more than Rs. 10 lakhs as Central Excise duty or Service Tax were required to file the returns electronically.
The next due date for filing the Service Tax Return is 25th of October 2011 for the period from 1st April to 30th September 2011. But, to provide time to adjust to e-filing requirements, the Department has, by Order No. 1/2011-S.T., dated 20th October, 2011, extended the due date whereby Service Tax Returns can be filed till 26th December, 2011.
All Central Excise Returns namely, ER1 to ER8 are also to be filed electronically now. These include Excise Returns and Cenvat credit declarations and statements.
The Revenue Department uses the software - Automation of Central Excise and Service Tax (ACES) to facilitate electronic filing of returns. However, experts say that the software and hardware should be upgraded as there had been problems in the past.