Is Tax Included in Purchase Orders?

Home » Blogs » Is Tax Included in Purchase Orders?

Table of Contents


A Purchase Order(PO) is a crucial B2B document that buyers use to place an order with the supplier. The PO includes the required goods, expected delivery date, price, and other different terms and conditions applicable to that order. The buyer supplies a PO, and the vendor accepts it. Once accepted, it is a legally binding document. The vendor is expected to meet the terms and conditions of the PO and supply the goods at the quoted price within the delivery date. They also agree to handle taxes in procurement as per the PO and tax invoice.

As PO sets clear expectations, it is beneficial for both buyer and supplier. During audit trails, POs play an important role. According to the GST billing requirements, the purchase order must be issued in a specific format and adhere to taxation guidelines.

This blog will give you a detailed insight into purchase orders and taxation to navigate the GST landscape with ease while doing business in India.

Understanding Taxes in Purchasing

Following the introduction of GST regulations in India in 2017, Goods and Services Tax (GST) is imposed on all purchases. The GST taxation system created a comprehensive system in India, eliminating the different types of direct and indirect taxes. Now, buyers only need to pay one type of tax called GST whenever they make a purchase within India. This helps in avoiding tax cascading, thus reducing the total cost of the goods.

captainbiz understanding taxes in purchasing

Source –

Depending on the type of purchase, tax inclusion in purchasing may involve central, state, and integrated tax. These are location-based taxes; you only need to pay GST once for every purchase order. Every GST-registered buyer who issues a purchase order is required to include their GSTIN in the purchase order. They must also include essential information related to the location of the business.

GST-registered businesses must pay GST tax for the goods consumed. Based on the location of the business of the supplier and buyer, this GST tax may vary. Some goods are exempted from GST. In that case, there is no need to include GST information for such items.

Also Read: Understanding GST On Purchase Orders: A Comprehensive Guide

Factors Influencing Tax Inclusion in Purchase Orders

To understand the taxation in purchase orders better, you need to know what factors influence tax inclusion in the purchase order. As the GST is a location-based tax, every taxable good is taxed the same from the supplier and buyer sides. Using an automated billing solution like CaptainBiz will allow you to auto-populate GST fields so that no mistakes are made while entering the tax information.

The purchase ordering process as per GST is affected by the following types of purchases:

  • Intra-state purchase – When both buyer and supplier are in the same state and goods are supplied and delivered within the same state, it is declared as an intra-state purchase. SGST and CGST are applicable in this case. The taxes are levied on the assessable value of the goods purchased.
  • Interstate purchase – When the buyer and supplier are in different states, and goods are shipped from and delivered to varying states, IGST is applicable on the assessable value of the goods based on the GST rates in the destination state.
  • Direct delivery purchase orders – If goods are supplied directly to the service location or project site, interstate or intrastate GST is applicable. In other words, regardless of whether the goods are delivered to a warehouse or site location, GST is applicable based on the destination state.
  • Purchase returns – If the buyer is not satisfied with the goods or goods are supplied in excess, they can make purchase returns. GST is calculated based on the recipient amount and based on the transaction value. When a buyer returns goods within six months of receipt of the goods, the tax already specified in the order line is considered. Otherwise, the tax must be recalculated.
  • Free-of-cost purchases – Sometimes, the buyer may request samples from suppliers, and the supplier may be willing to send them free of cost. Even if the supplier wishes not to collect money from the buyer, GST must be calculated based on the assessable value.
  • Purchased orders with landed costs – When freight and insurance charges are included as landed costs, tax is incurred based on the GST tax code used in the order line.
  • Import purchase orders – For import transactions, IGST will be replaced with Special Additional Duty and Counter. Basic Customs Duty (BCD) must, however, be paid along with IGST.
  • Composition scheme – If the supplier is registered under a composition scheme, GST is applicable based on the composition scheme GST rates. In that case, the standard GST rates need not be mentioned.

Tax Inclusivity in Purchase Orders Explained

The standard format for purchase orders includes fields where the buyer must mention the GST. Tax-inclusive purchase orders are better for both buyers and suppliers. The buyers will know the exact cost of purchase as tax is already included in the quoted price. The supplier can use the purchase order to auto-populate details into their GST tax invoice to avoid discrepancies.

In some cases, it is possible to issue a purchase order without tax inclusion in purchasing. Both buyers and suppliers must previously agree upon this. In this case, you must handle taxation charges at the time of purchase. Every taxable good can only be purchased after paying the GST. Not including the tax information on the purchase order will not make it easy for the buyer to budget for the purchase.

Legal Implications and Regulations

Every GST document issued by the buyer and supplier is a legally binding contract. To claim input tax credit against purchases, buyers need clear documents on purchases and invoices. The suppliers also need detailed purchase orders to issue GST-compliant invoices.

Based on the previously agreed terms, the details, such as whether GST is included or excluded, must be mentioned in the PO. If GST is omitted, ex-GST must be specified. Once the supplier accepts the purchase order, they must make arrangements to make the supply. They must also issue a GST tax invoice at the time of supply.

Maintaining accurate records of purchase orders, invoices, bills, vouchers, and other documentation is essential for tax compliance in purchasing. The monthly, quarterly, and annual submission of GST forms is mandatory for all GST-registered businesses. Errors or omissions in purchase orders or invoices at the time of GST submission can lead to penalties. Also, record-keeping will enable businesses to resolve disputes peacefully.

Best Practices for Handling Taxes in Purchase Orders

For GST compliance with purchase orders, the following tips will help:

  • Explicitly state tax inclusion with the purchase order
  • Use consistent terminology to avoid misinterpretations
  • Follow the standard GST purchase order format
  • Identify the right applicable taxes
  • Use an automated GST billing solution to automate pricing calculations, including tax details
  • Maintain accurate records of every business transaction
  • Verify the supplier invoice with the purchase order
  • Reconcile discrepancies as soon as you find them
  • Adhere to GST filing requirements

Also Read: Do You Add GST To A Purchase Order?

Challenges and Solutions

The major challenge with GST bills and documents is ensuring accurate tax calculations. If you issue a purchase order without including GST tax, you must specify it clearly. Otherwise, miscommunication can result in a loss for both business parties. Also, if goods are supplied using a wrong tax invoice, it is considered a GST offence. It can lead to penalties.

Managing multiple tax rates is another challenge when you purchase goods from suppliers in different locations. Manual calculations are prone to errors and delays. This can result in business disputes. It will also affect the accuracy of record keeping.

The best way to avoid all the GST challenges is to use automated GST billing software such as CaptainBiz. Using this software, you only need to enter the details of the supplier while your GST details and GST tax rates will be auto-populated based on the GST master set. Also, purchase orders can be exported directly for filing GST forms, which will streamline the taxation process for your business.


A PO is an essential document for a buyer to request goods from a supplier. The supplier must accept the PO and issue goods based on the purchase request. Once accepted, the PO becomes a legally binding contract. So, ensuring accurate details such as purchase orders and taxation is essential because all documents must be uploaded to the GSTN for verification and authentication for GST return filing. Ensuring the accuracy of documentation is a key requirement for GST-registered businesses to avoid penalties and charges.

Boost your business game with CaptainBiz, the all-in-one GST billing and accounting software. Generate instant invoices, manage inventory seamlessly, and file taxes effortlessly. Experience the freedom of efficient operations with CaptainBiz. 

Also Read: Is GST Applicable On Purchase Orders?


  • Is tax included in a GST purchase order?

Yes, a GST purchase order includes taxes. The total cost of the PO incorporates the applicable GST. However, in some cases, if the buyer doesn’t want to include GST, they must mention it clearly.

  • How is GST calculated on a purchase order?

GST is calculated as a percentage of the taxable value of the goods or services. The exact percentage varies based on the GST rate applicable to the specific item or service. It also varies based on the location of the buyer and supplier.

  • Are there different GST rates for different items?

Yes, GST rates vary depending on the category of goods or services. The government classifies items into different GST slabs, each with its corresponding tax rate. While some goods may share the same GST rate, you must always ensure that you mention accurate GST details on the purchase order.

  • Do I need to mention GST on a purchase order?

While it’s not mandatory, many businesses include a separate line item for GST on purchase orders to provide transparency and clarity regarding the tax component. Many businesses consider it a standard format to include a separate GST column on the purchase order.

  • Can I claim the input tax credit on GST mentioned in the purchase order?

Technically, businesses can generally claim input tax credit on the GST mentioned in the purchase order. However, ITC can only be claimed if the supplier issues the GST tax invoice. The tax invoice is a confirmation of delivery and request for purchase. Only with a GST invoice can the buyer claim ITC.

  • Are there any exemptions from GST on purchase orders?

Some goods and services may be exempt from GST. You must refer to the official government website to find out whether the goods you intend to buy incur GST or not.

  • How does GST impact international purchases?

International purchases may involve different tax considerations, such as IGST (Integrated Goods and Services Tax) for imports. You must know the applicable rules and regulations for cross-border transactions to include the right GST details.

  • Can the GST amount change after issuing a purchase order?

The GST amount on a purchase order is based on the rates applicable at the time of issuance. Changes in tax rates after that point generally do not affect the existing purchase orders. However, if you have misquoted the GST amount, it may be subject to change later in the supplier’s tax invoice.

  • Is reverse charge applicable to GST on purchase orders?

The reverse charge applies when the recipient, rather than the supplier, is liable to pay GST. This can be relevant in certain cases, such as services received from an unregistered vendor. In that case, it must be mentioned in the purchase order.

  •  How can I ensure compliance with GST regulations on purchase orders?

To ensure compliance, stay informed about the latest GST rates, maintain accurate records, and use automated billing software. Streamlining GST billing is a sure-fire way to ensure GST compliance. 

author avatar
Niharika Kapoor Content Writer
Niharika is a Freelance Content Writer and Translator with a Master of Arts in Literature. She has 5+ years of working in the same and has worked in different industries.

Leave a Reply