Published on:
February 20, 2023
Prudhvi Raj

RCM under GST on Security, Advocate, Transport, Residential Rent Services

Reverse Charge Mechanism (RCM) under GST mandates that the liability to pay taxes shifts to the recipient of goods or services instead of the supplier in certain cases. RCM comes into play in specific situations involving prescribed goods and select services. Here, we explore the intricacies of RCM as applicable to security, legal, transportation, and residential rental services under the Indian GST regime. The complex dynamics determining RCM designation and the consequent tax compliance requirements are scrutinized for these four classes of services. While RCM brings in transparency by curbing evasion, it also increases the compliance burden for Service Recipients. Let us delve deeper into the nuances of inverted duty structure and associated obligations in these selected segments. 

Security Services

Security services play a pivotal role for the majority of businesses and individuals alike. Companies must employ security personnel to guarantee the safety and protection of their premises as well as their workforce. These services fall under the category of provisions that are liable for Reverse Charge Mechanism as per Goods and Services Tax.

According to the GST Act, security services furnished by any person excluding a corporate entity to a registered entity are amenable to Reverse Charge Mechanism under GST. This implies that the recipient of the services, i.e. the registered entity, has to pay the GST on the security services directly to the government authorities.

Advocate Services

Advocate Services often entail perplexing reversals concerning goods and services tax duties. Recipients navigating revenue collection mechanism intricacies encounter surprising obligations discrepant from presumptions. Businesses procuring legal counsel face directly remitting levies to authorities from advocates' bills. Complexities differentiate accordingly as clients constitute incorporated or private entities. The latter involves representatives self-accounting for fees' associated taxation whereas the former imposes upon contractors transferred liabilities for collected sums. Nuances demand vigilance lest inadvertent non-compliance incur penalties. Whether dealing with corporations or persons, skilled guidance clarifies responsibilities and ensures compliance within this multifaceted framework.

Transport Services

Transport services play a pivotal role in facilitating the movement of goods across India. Under the intricate framework established by the Goods and Services Tax (GST), transportation of cargo by road warrants special consideration. Per GST statutes, if a registered entity enlists the help of a goods transport operator, it assumes responsibility for remitting the levy directly to government coffers through the reverse charge mechanism. This ensures the tax obligations are duly honored when one business contracts another for conveyance services.

However, should the goods transport agency itself be registered under GST, the dynamic shifts—now accountability lies with the service provider rather than the customer. In these situations, the onus falls on the carrier to pay applicable GST on functions performed. With registration comes both rights and duties, as compliance requires remittance whether serving as a contractor or contractee in the transport sector.

Residential Rent Collection

Individual property owners and families are exempt from collecting sales tax on rent payments. However, if a corporation owns the property, it must charge and remit the applicable goods and services levy. Tenants of corporate landlords are designated the responsible party under this reverse charge mechanism.

It bears emphasizing that reversed liability pertains exclusively to registered renters. Unenrolled recipients face no obligations, as the program aims to streamline taxation of commercial exchanges between GST-registered counterparties. Whether by a person or passed through to a tenant, appropriate duty remains mandatory for business entities while exemptions shelter private arrangements. Complexity arises in discerning the nature of landholders and lessees, though transparency persists as the system's priority.


RCM under GST applies to particular goods and services in precise situations. Security services rendered by way of supply of manned guards and security personnel or services by way of supply of labor for any process, like loaders, packers, and sorters are liable to RCM. Additionally, transport of passengers by any type of motor vehicle with a contracted capacity of more than thirteen is also subject to reverse charge. Enterprises need to comprehend the repercussions of RCM under GST and adhere to the regulations to circumvent any consequences or lawful action. Moreover, renting of residential dwellings like flats, apartments, and houses to individuals or entities is subject to 5% GST under RCM by the recipient of supply. Thus, businesses must familiarise themselves with the applicable scenarios to ensure compliance.



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