Many reasons can prompt an individual to place a withdrawal request on his or her EPF account. To ensure that this process goes smoothly, find out all the conditions associated with making a withdrawal from EPF.
If you’re working in a corporate set-up, then you most definitely know what is the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF). It is a form of retirement savings scheme, where both the employer and employee make certain contributions every month (towards the EPF scheme). Once you, the employee, retire or are unemployed for a period of 2 months or more, you can claim the entire amount that is in the fund. Now, understanding the contribution bit is easy - the employer will deduct your share of the PF amount from your salary and transfer it to the PF account. Withdrawals, on the other hand, are subject to certain prescribed conditions. This article is intended at helping you understand the conditions under which you can make a claim on your EPF savings scheme.
EPF Withdrawal Conditions
Withdrawals under the EPF scheme can be made in two ways - wholly or partially. According to the EPF Act, an individual can claim the final PF settlement either 1) at the time of retirement (after attaining 58 years of age) or 2) when he or she has been unemployed for 60 straight days (two months) or more after leaving a job. Partial withdrawal of EPF can be made under certain circumstances. Those would include:
A member can withdraw up to 50% of his or her share with interest for the marriage of self, daughter, son, brother or sister. The individual must be an EPFO member for a period of at least 7 years to apply for this withdrawal.
A member can withdraw up to 50% of his or her share with interest for post-matriculation studies of self or children. The individual must be an EPFO member for a period of at least 7 years to apply for this withdrawal.
Purchase of land / purchase or construction of a house
A member can withdraw up to 24 months of basic wages and dearness allowance for purchase of land. In case of purchase or construction of house, the member can withdraw up to 36 times of monthly wages plus dearness allowance. The individual must be an EPFO member for a period of at least 5 years to apply for this withdrawal, and the house should be in the name of the employee or spouse or both.
Home loan repayment
A member can withdraw up to 90% from both the employee’s contribution and the employer’s contribution in Employee Provident Fund. The individual must be an EPFO member for a period of at least 10 years to apply for this withdrawal. The other conditions include i) The property needs to be registered in the name of the employee or spouse or both, ii) Withdrawal is permitted subject to providing necessary documents, as required by the EPFO for the home loan availed, iii) The corpus in the member's PF account (or together with the spouse), along with interest, has to be over Rs 20,000 (make sure to check EPF balance before requesting withdrawal).
A member can withdraw up to 12 times of the monthly wages for renovation of home. The individual must be an EPFO member for a period of at least 5 years to apply for this withdrawal. The property has to be registered in the name of the employee or spouse or both.
One year before retirement
A member can withdraw up to 90% of accumulated balance with interest, once he or she reaches 57 years of age.
How to Withdraw EPF Funds if you are Unemployed for a Month?
EPFO members are allowed to withdraw up to 75% of the outstanding balance from their PF accounts if they are out of a job for more than a month. The EPF corpus from which the withdrawal is being made will comprise of contributions by self, the employer’s contributions and the interest accrued. For making complete withdrawal, however, one will have to wait for two straight months from the date of cessation of unemployment.
How to Claim EPF Money after EPF Accountholder’s Death?
In the event that the EPF subscriber passes away, the nominee or legal heir can initiate the claim process. Some of the documents that the claimant will have to provide include EPF Composite Form 5IF, Death Certificate and Form 10C/D (if applicable). The application for the claim has to be submitted through the employer under whom the EPFO member was last employed. If the claim is through a form downloaded from the website of the EPFO, all the pages have to be signed by the claimant and employer.
How to Withdraw PF Balance Without UAN?
If, for some reason, a member is unable to apply for a UAN, it is still possible for him or her to withdraw from EPF. The individual will first need to download the non-Aadhaar composite claim form. This has to be filled-up and submitted directly to the regional PF office. An essential point to be noted is that without a UAN, the composite claim form (non-Aadhaar) has to be attested, either by any bank manager, a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate.
Now that you know everything there is to withdrawing from your EPF account, you shouldn’t face any trouble when placing a request for the same. EPF savings scheme is mainly intended at helping people at the time of retirement. Thus, it is advisable to not break it, unless the situation so demands. Also, make it a habit to check EPF balance on a regular basis as this will keep you informed about how much you’ll have saved up by the time you retire. A word of advice - never opt out of EPF. It can play a very critical role when you retire from your job or are unemployed for a long duration.
Recommended Read: How to file an online claim for PF withdrawal?