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What is an e-way bill?

Electronic Way bill, better known as the e-way bill, is generated for the movement of goods, on the e-Way portal. It is an important document which is an electronically generated and is required to be borne by the person who is carrying any container load of goods exceeding INR 50,000 in value. The movement can be inter-state as well as intra-state. The e-way bill, that came into effect on 1st April, 2018, has been mandated in terms of Section 68 of the Goods and Services Tax, better known as GST.

When the e-way bill is created, the transporter or the recipient of the e-way bill is provided with a unique e-way bill Number (EBN). This number has replaced the way bill, which was a physical document that prevailed during the VAT system.

How to generate an e-way bill?

An e-way bill can either be generated either via SMS or through online e-way bill system. It has to be ensured that the bill is generated before the movement of the consignment containing the goods starts. The steps to generate e-way bill are:

  • Login to the e-way bill portal and on the Main menu page click ‘Generate New’.

  • A bill generation form would appear that has to be filled with the required details. If you are a supplier, select ‘Outward’ and if you are a recipient click ‘Inward’. Enter the GSTIN wherever required.

  • Once the GSTIN is entered, the basic details will be auto filled. The second part of the form needs to be filled with the name and description of the product, the HSN code, the IGST or CGST rates that are applicable and the approximate distance to be travelled.

  • After filing in the details, click ‘Submit’ to generate the e-way bill. If you wish to generate a consolidated e-way bill, you need to provide the ‘e-way bill number’ in the required field and click “Submit”.

Who should generate an e-way bill?

Let us now see who should generate an e-way bill

GST Registered Person:

  • In case a registered individual is making a movement with a consignment of goods, either as a buyer or a seller in his own vehicle or a rented vehicle or by air, rail or ship, then it is mandatory for him/her to electronically generate e-way bill in Form GST EWB 01 on the common portal by furnishing the required information in Part B of the GST form.

  • When the movement is being caused by the GST registered person, but he himself is not accompanying the consignment and has hired a transport facility to do it for him, then it is the transporter who needs to generate the e-way bill. However, the registered person has to furnish the required information about the transporter in GST Part B Form. Then, the transporter who is carrying the assignment can generate the e-way bill through GST Part A Form.

GST Un-registered Person

  • If a GST unregistered individual is making a movement with a consignment of goods, either himself or through a rented transport, then the e-way bill has to be generated by the individual himself or by the hired transporter, by filing the completing Form GST EWB-01.

  • When a GST unregistered individual makes a supply to a GST registered individual, and they know each other since the start of the transaction, then either the registered individual or the transporter need to fulfil the normal procedure of the e-way bill generation.

Exemptions on e-way bill

In the following situations, it is not mandatory to generate and carry an e-way bill.

  • The transport is being made through a non-motor vehicle.

  • The value of goods being transported is less than INR 50,000.

  • From an ICD (Inland Container Depot) or CFS (Container Freight Station) to a customs location.

  • If the goods are being transferred within the declared area.

  • If the goods are being carried to a weigh bridge which is within a range of 20 kms and is covered under a Delivery Challan.

  • The goods that are being transferred are either to or from the Defence Ministry.

If the transporter falls in one of the above-mentioned categories, then he is not liable to generate the e-way bill. But, it should be made sure that he carries the other required documents as stated by the Road tax and rules.

E-way Bill Implementation Status

There has been a steady increase in the number of e-way bills generated since its enforcement in 2018, April. There has been a positive response with almost all Union Territories as well as the states. Certain states, in case of financial limits lesser than the threshold amount, have been provided with reliefs by exempting them from the e-way bill system. For instance, in the case of Tamil Nadu, an e-way bill need not be generated if the value of goods in below INR 1 lakh, unlike the otherwise limit of INR 50,000.

Documents Required

The person travelling with the consignments must have the following documents with him:

  • An invoice or the supply-bill or a delivery challan

  • A print-out of the e-way bill or the Number of the e-way bill.

When at the place of verification, the officials may attest the e-way bill. A physical verification of the goods and the vehicle can also be made after obtaining the authority.

The format of the GST e-way bill

Here is an image to help you get an idea of format of the e-way bill that is to be generated electronically. It contains of 2 parts A and B. Part A contains the details of the consignment and the invoice too. The following details are to be furnished-

  • GST IN means that the recipient needs to provide his GST identification number.

  • Place of Delivery is the place where the consignment is to reach along with the pin code of that area.

  • Invoice of the goods that are being transported.

  • Value of the goods that are being transported.

  • HSN Code is the Harmonized System of Nomenclature code

  • Reason for transportation has to be chosen from the list of approved reasons already given, the individual must ensure that the most appropriate selection is made.

  • Transport Document Number is the bill of Loading Number or the Goods Receipt number.

E-Way Bill
A.1 - GSTIN Of Recipient
A.2 - Place Of Delivery
A.3 - Invoice or Challan Number
A.4 - Invoice or Challan Date
A.5 - Value Of Goods
A.6 - HSN Code
A.7 - Reason For Transportation
A.8 - Transport Document Number
B.- Vehicle Number

Part B of the form is to be filled by the transporter.

The Validity of an E-Way Bill

For over-dimensional cargo conveyances that cover a distance less than 20 kms, the e-way bill is valid for one day, and for every extra 20 kms or more the validity can be increased for an additional day. For vehicles other than over-dimensional cargos traveling less than 100 kms, the e-way bill has a validity for a day and for every extra 100 kms, the validity can be increased for an additional day.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of E way bill?

The main objective of introducing the e-way bill is to rule out the problems faced in the logistics compilations in the transportation of goods within the states. An official movement of goods enables an identification of the consigner as well as the consigner, bringing transparency in the system. It has been instrumental in saving precious time of transporters who had to stand in long queues to pay their taxes.

Who generates e-way bill?

Anyone who is transporting a consignment of goods (where the value of the goods is above INR 50,000) either as a buyer or a seller in his own vehicle or a rented vehicle or by air, rail or ship, then it is mandatory for him/her to electronically generate e-way bill. If the goods are handed over to a transporter, then the e-way bill is to be generated by the transporter.

How do I print an e-way bill?

Printing an e-way bill is quite simple. When you generate the bill online, under the “e-way bill” tab, there is the option of “Print e-way bill”. When you click that, a screen would appear where you need to enter the number of your e-way bill and click ‘Go’. After that, the e-bill will be displayed and on the bottom right, there would be the option of ‘Print’. Click it and you will get the print out.

Is e-way bill required within the state?

Yes, it is. But if the goods are to be carried over a distance which is less than 50 kms within a state, it can be done by filling only the details required in the Part A of the form. If the distance is up to a 100 kms, then the e-way bill that is generated is workable for one day.

How do you make an e-way bill?

There are two ways to make an e-way bill via SMS or through online e-way bill system. If you wish to generate the e-way bill online you need to visit the official portal, fill in the required details and take a print out of the same. In case you wish to make the e-way bill via SMS, you need to register your mobile number. An OTP would be sent to that number and once you verify it, you will be able to link it with your User Id. Post this, you will be able to make the e-way bill via SMS.

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