I am an Indian resident. Can I ask the US firm to deposit the money directly into my India bank account? What will be the interest rates paid to me by the banks in India? Will the US firm be expected to deduct TDS and remit to income-tax department in India and give me proof of such deposit in  Form 16. Will I need to charge Goods and Services Tax, (GST) on the earnings and remit to government?

If you are working as a consultant of US company you have to take registration under GST Act. Form 16 would be applicable if you are working as an employee of the US Company. In such case TDS will be applicable if the US Company have office setup in India.

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Arjun Arjun
Answered on February 11,2020

Resident Indians who have earnings in foreign currency from consultancy services can opt to receive their proceeds in specific accounts. These are Exchange Earners Foreign Currency Account (EEFC account) or Resident Foreign Currency (Domestic) Account (RFC account). Money is deposited in these accounts in a specific foreign currency and can be converted to rupees as and when required. However, these accounts are in the nature of current accounts and do not earn any interest. Account holders can make commission-free foreign exchange payments for specific purposes. In case you do not plan to use this foreign currency outside India in the near future, it may be beneficial to receive the proceeds in rupees in your Indian savings account. You can then invest them as per your needs

Since you are receiving payment from outside India, usually they do not deduct TDS unless the local laws so specify. Also note that Form 16 is only applicable in case of payments made as salary. To find out how GST will be levied on your services, we need to see where these have been supplied. We have to identify where the ‘place of supply’ of the service is, so that GST is charged properly. If services are supplied outside India and either the recipient or supplier of service is outside India, usually location of the recipient is taken as place of supply. Therefore, this will be an export of service since recipient is in the US. Exports are zero-rated and you do not have to deposit any GST on these services. However, the place of supply rules under the IGST Act lay down some specific scenarios where place of supply may be other than the location of recipient. So you must check whether your services fall under these specific situations or not.

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