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Revision of the Guidelines for engagement of Standing Counsels to represent the Income-tax Department before High Courts and other judicial forums; revision of their Schedule of fees and related matters- regarding

Revision of the Guidelines for engagement of Standing Counsels to represent the Income-tax Department before High Courts and other judicial forums; :revision of their Schedule of fees and related matters- regarding - Income Tax - 7/2016 - Dated:- 7-9-2016 - Instruction No. 7/2016 F No 279/Misc./M-75/201 1-ITJ (Part-II) Government of India Ministry of Finance Department of Revenue Central Board of Direct Taxes New Delhi the 7th September, 2016 To All Principal Chief Commissioners of Income-tax Su .....

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ement of Standing Counsels should be initiated at least 6 months before the expiry of the panel. The size of the panel should be carefully decided based on the pendency of appeals (on an average one Senior Counsel can handle 450-500 appeals). A buffer of at least 25% of the required strength or a workable buffer should be considered while determining the size of panel. The panel of counsel s proposed along with the buffer (hereafter called extend ed panel) shall be forwarded to Board. It must be .....

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el. Having this extended panel read y would ensure that time is not lost in re-doing the whole process of advertisement etc. for filling up one or two vacancies in the panel. It is further suggested that the ratio of senior counsel to junior counsel should normally be 1:1. However, the Pr.CCIT/ CCIT may decide otherwise depending on the local conditions. 3. The proposal of the Pr. CCIT/ CCIT shall invariably include: (a) Composition of the Screening (b) Pendency of appeals. (c) Minutes of the me .....

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nsels will be engaged in accordance with the revised schedule of fees and related terms and conditions applicable to them as given in Annexure-II. 5.1 These guidelines and the revised schedule of the fee and allowances shall come into effect from 07.09.2016. 5.2 The Standing Counsels will be paid fee at the old rates in respect of their appearance and other work done by them prior to 07.09.2016 and at the revised rates in respect of the work done by them on or after 07.09.2016. 6. This issues wi .....

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all into the following two categories: (a) Senior Standing Counsel (b) Junior Standing Counsel In a station where counsels do not have sufficient experience to be engaged as Senior Standing Counsel, the CCIT may designate a Junior Standing Counsel to perform the functions of Senior Standing Counsel for that station. The Standing Counsel so designated shall perform the function of arguing cases before the Hon ble High Court/ITAT in the absence of a Senior Standing Counsel. 2. Eligibility Conditio .....

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ficer of the Income-tax Department who is eligible to appear before the High Court as an advocate and has retired/resigned from the post of Add!. Commissioner/Director of Income-tax or any equivalent post after occupying such post for at least three yea rs or any higher post or who has been a member of ITAT, provided that he has not been removed/dismissed or compulsorily retired from service on account of disciplinary action and no disciplinary proceeding under service rules or pension rules is .....

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vided that he has not been removed/dismissed or compulsorily retired from service on account of disciplinary action and no disciplinary proceeding under service rules or pension rules is pending against him. 3. Procedure for engagement of Standing Counsels 3.1 For the purpose of engagement, the CCIT will call for applications in Proforma -A1 & A2 (as applicable), by advertisement in 1 (one) national and 2 (two) local newspapers, and from Bar Association of High Court. The advertisement shall .....

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Exemptions shall also be included. ln Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata (WB & Sikkim), Chennai (Tamil Nadu) and Bangalore (Karnataka & Goa), a Joint Secretary Level Officer from Ministry of Law and Justice (MoLJ) may be requested to be part of the Screening Committee. In case there is no timely response from the MoLJ, the Screening Committee may proceed without any further delay. 3.3 Particulars of the applicants expertise in handling direct tax matters, aptitude for interpretation and their suitab .....

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ark are not to be considered irrespective of the number of vacancies. 3.4 Standing Counsels should preferably be taken from amongst the panel of Jr. Standing Counsels of at least three years standing, subject to favourable assessment by the Screening Committee . In assessing suitability, the quality of drafting, assistance to the appearing counsels and co-ordination aptitude with the officers of the Department should be taken into account. 3.5 The engagement of panel shall normally be for a peri .....

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e Board in Pro forma-D before 30th June of the following year. 5. Allocation of Standing Counsels to PCIT/CIT Charges 5.1. The CCIT will be the overall in charge of entire litigation work on behalf of the Income-tax Department in his region before the High Court concerned. Allocation of panel of standing counsels to PCIT/CIT charges has to be done by the CIT (J) under instructions from/ approval of the CCIT. In places where post of CIT (J) is not provided for, this work should be undertaken by t .....

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least 1 year experience as Junior Standing Counsel, to be argued independently by him/her. 6. Termination of engagement/resignation/expky of term The engagement of the Counsel would be terminable through written intimation by either side without assigning any reason. The CCIT is authorized to act on behalf of the Department for the purpose under intimation to the Board. On expiry of the term or termination or resignation, the Stand ing Counsel shall immediately handover the br iefs and other rel .....

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particulars (Diary number, ITA number etc.) to the PCIT/CIT concerned; 7.3 communicate defects/office objections, if any, in the appeals etc. and take prompt steps to rectify the same with the assistance of the PCIT/CIT; 7.4 appear on behalf of the department in the High Court/ other judicial forums, as required in the cases assigned to him; 7.5 keep the PCIT/CIT inf0rmed of the important developments in the case particularly with regard to dates of hearing, conclusion of hearing, date of judgm .....

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uired, render all assistance to the law officers, Advocate General of the State Government, special or Senior Counsel, who may be engaged in a particular case before the Supreme Cou rt, High Courts, ITAT, ; 7.8 give legal advice to the Department on such civil, criminal and revenue matters pertaining to direct taxes and such matters arising in the course of administration of the Department as are referred to him by the Department including : a) examination and settling of drafts of legal nature, .....

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ubmitted by the Counsels as prescribed in the Proforma B. Specific duties of Jr. Standing Counsel and related matters 7.12 The duties of Standing Counsel specifically include rendering meaningful assistance to Sr. Standing Counsel in (a) Drafting memo of appeal and consulting assessment records etc., if required. (b) Removal of defects I office objections in the cases filed by the Department (c) Research for preparation of cases for representation. (d) Assist the Counsel in preparation and submi .....

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