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The Delhi High Court today asked the Centre and AAP government to respond to a plea claiming that the GST law was not being properly implemented against the lawyers. A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and Pratibha M Singh, while issuing notices to the central and Delhi governments, said no coercive steps should be taken against lawyers or law firms who have not yet been registered under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) law. The court said this interim order would be applicable till the two governments clarified whether the advocates have to pay GST on all legal services, except for representing its clients in courts and tribunals. It also said that if no clarification was issued by the next date of hearing on July 18, then the court will hear arguments for passing an interim order. The bench was hearing a plea filed by lawyer J K Mittal seeking quashing of the notifications issued by the Centre and the Delhi government as per which GST will be paid by advocates and law firms on all services offered by them, except representing their clients in courts. For representational services, the recipient of the service -- clients or litigants -- will have to pay GST as per the notifications, the petition has said. Mittal has claimed that the decisions of the two governments were contrary to the recommendation of the GST Council which had recommended that on all services offered by a lawyer or law firm, the service recipient would pay GST. The petition also alleged that the Council had recommended that lawyers or law firms should be exempt from registration under the central and state GST laws, which has also not been followed by the two governments.
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