E-Invoice: Free Tools for E-invoice Generation for Small Taxpayer

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The e-invoice system was a leap to standardise invoice generation among taxpayers and reporting of the transactions. The government introduced e-invoicing in a phase-wise manner beginning from 1st October 2020. In the recent changes, the government has mandated e-invoicing for businesses with an aggregate turnover above Rs. 5 crores. This is set to be applicable from 1st January 2023. Following is the phase-wise implementation of e-invoices:


E-Invoice Applicability Turnover

E-invoicing Applicability Date

Applicable Notification


Rs. 500 crores

1st October 2020

61/2020 – Central Tax


Rs. 100 crores

1st January 2021

88/2020 – Central Tax


Rs. 50 crores

1st April 2021

05/2021 – Central Tax


Rs. 20 crores

1st April 2022

01/2022 – Central Tax


Rs. 10 crores

1st October 2022

17/2022 – Central Tax


Rs. 5 crores

1st January 2023


What is E-Invoice?
E-invoice, also known as an electronic invoice, is basically an electronically generated and delivered invoice launched to standardise the invoice generation practice. It consists of a 64-character long unique number known as the Invoice Reference Number (IRN). The e-invoice is generated by the Invoice Registration Portal (IRP) using the hash algorithm. The details in relation to the B2B supplies are uploaded by the supplier and are authenticated by the e-invoicing portal. It includes invoices, credit notes as well as debit notes. But how to generate e-invoices in GST portal? Is there any way to generate e-invoices for free?

Ways to Generate E-Invoices Under GST

Here are some of the ways you can use to generate e-invoices for free:

E-invoice Portal: If you are wondering how to generate e-invoices in GST portal, the government has launched a dedicated portal for e-invoices. You can generate an e-invoice directly from the e-invoice portal. This e-invoice system allows you to directly generate your e-invoices after getting registered here. However, those taxpayers already registered on the e-way bill portal are not required to get registered on the e-invoice portal.

Offline Utility: You can generate and upload your invoices in the standard format and generate IRN in bulk using the bulk upload tool. You can access this tool from ‘Help >> Tools >> Bulk Generation Tools’. Once the bulk generation file is prepared, you can upload the same for generating IRNs. 

Using API: Here, you need to do an API integration between the system and the IRP. You can either go through GST Suvidha Providers (GSP) or directly through IRP. However, before the integration goes live, it is important to get it tested in a sandbox environment. Either you or the GSP shall submit the test summary report for integration on the sandbox website. After this, the IRN can be generated on a real-time basis with a click of a button.
If the business is already integrated with the API on the e-way bill system, then the API credentials will remain the same as earlier. This is equally applicable in case the API is integrated with the e-way bill system that is used by another GSTIN with the same PAN. Otherwise, you will be required to get the IP address registered on the e-invoice portal or get it whitelisted. 

Using ERP: If you are using an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system or any accounting software, then you can generate the e-invoices using that software seamlessly. Most accounting software and ERP systems provide the facility to generate e-invoices. You just need to enter the invoice details in your ERP system as you did before. The ERP system will automatically generate the e-invoice based on your requirements.
Following were the free tools and techniques to generate your e-invoices. As the government is planning to further bring transparency in reporting and compliance, the threshold limit for generating e-invoices may come down to Rs. 1 crore by the end of the next fiscal year. For more details and queries regarding how to generate e-invoices under GST, feel free to contact your eAuditors. 

Author : Dipen

Date     : 04-Nov-2022