Friday, January 18, 2013

Depositing Service Tax under wrong Category does not mean that Service Tax Liability to be discharged again

In the case of Katrina Kaif vs. Commissioner of Service Tax Mumbai - I, the Hon’ble CESTAT (Mumbai Bench) vide order no. A/670/2012/CSTB/C-I, Appeal No. ST/387/2011, dated 09.10.2012 {2012(12) TMI 579- CESTAT- MUMBAI} has held that merely by paying service tax liability under wrong head does not mean that service tax liability has not been discharged and has to be deposited again in correct category. Further, the Hon’ble CESTAT has also clarified that the assessee means a person who is liable to pay service tax and includes his agent.

In this case, Katrina Kaif appointed M/s Matrix India Entertainment Consultants (P) Limited as her agent to receive amount of consideration for promotion of the product and to discharge the service tax liability on her behalf.

Matrix has discharged the service tax liability under the category of “Advertisement Agency Service” under which the agent was registered with the service tax department. Whereas, the department alleged that the category in which the assessee, Katrina Kaif, was liable to pay was “Business Auxiliary Services”. The Adjudicating authority further alleged that the assessee has to discharge again the service tax liability under Business Auxiliary Service.

In this regard the Hon’ble CESTAT has clarified that depositing service tax under wrong category does not mean that Matrix has not duly paid the service tax on behalf of the appellant, Ms. Katrina Kaif.

Hence, even if service tax has been deposited in wrong category, the adjudicating authority in no case can demand service tax again under the correct category.