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What is EPF?

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EPF is a retirement plan that allows you to save money in a tax-free environment. It also provides a lifetime pension if you meet the eligibility criteria.

EPFO assigns each member a UAN, which is an easy-to-use number that simplifies access to the EPF member portal. Employees can transfer their PF accounts from one establishment to another using their UAN.

Benefits

EPF, or Employees’ Provident Fund Organization, is an institution that encourages employees to save funds for retirement. It is governed by the Ministry of Labour and Employment, and its schemes cover Indian workers and those working abroad (who work in countries that have signed bilateral agreements with EPFO).

The scheme is regulated by specific rules and regulations laid down by the Government of India. It is a very popular savings scheme that helps an employee save a substantial amount of money over a period of time.

Besides saving for retirement, EPF also offers other benefits to its members. For example, if an individual dies while working, their family members can receive a lump-sum payment from the EPF.

Additionally, if an employee is in an accident, they can also claim for compensation. This is done using an EPF insurance policy.

Another benefit of the EPF is that it provides a tax-free interest rate for depositing money. The rate changes once every year, and you can check it on the website.

In addition, EPFO has a helpdesk that provides assistance to its members. These services include making transfers between accounts, checking balances, and withdrawing funds from the account.

One of the best things about EPFO is that its digitalization has made it easier for members to make use of its services. For instance, it has introduced a SMS service that allows members to check their PF status without visiting the EPFO office.

It has also introduced a digital Passbook that is easy to maintain and download. The service is a great way to keep track of your PF records.

There are also new composite claim forms that can be filed online and have a quicker turnaround time than the old ones. This is a big step towards making the process of filing claims easier and faster.

Another important change in the PF scheme is the introduction of a Universal Account Number. This is a 12-digit number that is assigned to all members by the EPFO. This number acts as an umbrella for the multiple Member Identification numbers that are allotted to a single member by different establishments. The idea is to link these numbers under a single UAN so that they can be easily viewed.

Contribution

As the name suggests, EPF is a retirement benefits scheme where both the employer and employee contribute a certain percentage of their salaries towards it. The contribution is made by both parties on a monthly basis and the amount is deposited into an individual’s account. The sum accumulates interest and eventually reaches a significant size when the person retires.

Besides the contributions made by the employees and the employers, an additional amount is contributed by the Government of India. This contribution is a form of tax savings for individuals and ensures financial stability in the future.

The employee’s contribution to the EPF is equal to 12 percent of their basic salary, dearness allowance and retaining allowance if any. Similarly, the employer’s contribution is also equal to 12 percent of the basic salary.

However, the employee can pay higher contributions than the statutory rate of 12 percent. This is known as voluntary contribution and earns tax-free interest.

Employers can opt to match such voluntary contributions.

The EPF provides a host of other benefits to its members. These include pension scheme, death cover, maternity leave, health care coverage and disability insurance among others.

Upon retirement, the employee receives a lump-sum payment including self and employer’s contribution with interest on both. This amount is also eligible for claiming under section 80C of the Income Tax Act.

Another interesting feature of EPF is that it offers a transfer of the account between different companies when an employee shifts jobs. This can be done through the EPFO member portal or by sending an email.

If the employee has opted for the digital signature option, then the process is simpler and quicker. The claim is accepted within three days.

The UAN (Universal Account Number) is a 12-digit number allotted to each EPFO member, which simplifies access to their accounts. All members can log in to their accounts using the UAN and execute operations such as withdrawals.

Moreover, the EPFO has introduced the digital signature option for approving claims for transfer of benefits from one organisation to another. This has reduced the time taken for a transfer claim from 20 to three days.

UAN

Universal Account Number (UAN) is a 12-digit number that consolidates all the Provident Fund (PF) accounts of employees in a single unified system. This enables individuals to easily withdraw their funds, transfer them or check them on a monthly basis.

UAN also helps to centralise employee data and bring down the administrative burden of employee verification from companies and employers. Moreover, it facilitates EPF members to keep track of their accounts and make changes in their records without the need for an employer’s help.

In order to get a UAN, an individual must first go to the official EPFO web portal and provide the necessary details. Then, they will receive a password on their registered mobile number that they can use to log in and access their account.

After activating their UAN, individuals can use the UAN app to check their PF balance, file claims and change their information online. They can also check their PF statement, download and view passbooks and even get a digital signature on their UAN.

Getting a UAN is easy. The process is quick and can be done from any device with an Internet connection.

To get a UAN, an individual must be at least 21 years old. He or she must provide some identity proof and address proof. These can be a driving license, passport, voter ID or any other document that shows your present address.

Once these documents are verified, a UAN will be issued to the individual. They will also be able to download and view their PF passbook from the EPFO website.

Linking a UAN to an Aadhaar card is a requirement by the government. This will ensure that the government can track the changes in a member’s identity and bank details.

If the individual is not yet an Aadhaar-holder, they can still get a UAN by submitting a valid PAN and proof of residence, such as a recent utility bill or lease/rental agreement. These documents can then be scanned and uploaded on the e-Sewa portal of the EPFO.

UAN helps to prevent the unauthorized withdrawal of funds from PF accounts. The central government has earmarked money for setting up social security funds for unorganized workers, gig and platform workers.

Claim

EPFO is the Employees Provident Fund Organisation and provides members with a variety of benefits. These include retirement plans, medical insurance and education assistance among others. In addition, it also gives employees the opportunity to withdraw accumulated EPF funds in case they face financial emergencies such as unemployment and are not able to continue paying their monthly contributions.

In the event of unemployment, EPFO permits the withdrawal of up to 75% of the amount accumulated in the account by its subscribers. This withdrawal can be made after one month of unemployment and will then be transferred to a new EPF account when the subscriber is hired again.

The process of withdrawing EPF funds through the EPFO portal is very simple and straightforward. Firstly, you must activate your UAN and link it to your Aadhaar. This is done by logging into the UAN Member e-SEWA website with your UAN and password. Then, you will need to verify your bank details through the portal.

After you have verified your bank account, you will need to fill in the Composite Claim Form that is available online. There are two types of Composite Claim Forms – Aadhaar and Non-Aadhaar. The Aadhaar Form does not require any attestation from your employer while the Non-Aadhaar Form requires a corresponding attestation.

If your date of birth does not match the one recorded by your employer, it can lead to the rejection of your claim. To overcome this issue, the EPFO has recently relaxed norms for correcting your date of birth. This is done through a circular issued on April 3, 2020.

During the registration procedure, you will need to provide your name, gender and date of birth. In addition, you will need to fill in your address and contact numbers.

Once you have completed this process, you will receive a notification on your registered mobile number. You will need to use this OTP to login into the EPFO portal and submit your claim for withdrawal or advance.

Once you have submitted the form, you will need to wait for a response from the EPFO. You can check the status of your claim online or by giving a missed call to a helpline number.

 

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