No Service Tax on Membership Subscription paid under ‘Club and Association Services’: CESTAT [Read Order]

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The Central, Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal ( CESTAT ), Chandigarh held that the appellant is not liable to pay service tax for membership subscription as a levy of service tax in respect of services provided under ‘Club & Association Services’.

The appellant is providing the service of Mandap Keeper Services, Exhibition Services, Management Consultancy Services, Sponsorship Services and Club and Association Services, Advertising & Conventions Services, they were paying service tax thereon.

During the course of Audit, it was found that the appellant was collecting membership subscription from its members but started paying service tax only, but prior to that the membership subscription they have not paid service tax under the category of ‘Club & Association Services’ during the period 16.06.2005 to 31.12.2008.

Therefore, the show cause notice was issued to the appellant and demand on service tax was confirmed against them. Against the said order, the appellant filed an appeal.

The Appellate Tribunal includes Judicial Member, Ashok Jindal, and Technical Member, Sanjiv Srivastava pronounced the order based on an appeal filed by M/s Confederation of Indian Industry.

In the light of the judgment in the case of State of West Bengal & Ors. Vs. Calcutta Club Limited and Federation of Surat Textile Traders Association vs. UOI the tribunal came into the conclusion that the appellant is not liable to pay service tax for membership subscription as a levy of service tax in respect of services provided by the appellant to its member is not liable to pay service tax.

While allowing the appeal the CESTAT said that no service tax is payable on membership subscription paid by the members of the appellant for providing services by the appellant to its members, therefore,  the appellant is not liable to pay service tax.

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