Recently the government has made changes in Employees Provident Fund (EPF) withdrawal in order to encourage savings and less use of retirement amount for instant need.
Theses changes can dent the hope of individuals who frequently changing jobs and withdraw the PF amount.
This move will assist individuals to maintain funds for longer duration and can help in generating better returns.
Here are 4 changes you need to be aware of:
1) Retirement age
Earlier, it was possible to withdraw upto 90% of PF balance on attaining 54 years of age or within one year before actual retirement, whichever is later.
Now, members will be able to avail this option only on attaining the age of 58 years.
Means, the age is increased from 54 to 58 years.
2) Continuity of PF membership
Earlier, membership could be terminated, if the person withdraws full amount of provident fund (PF) standing to his credit on cessation of employment.
Individual members can continue with same account with UAN number even after withdrawing as the EPFO new rule will not allow to withdraw the full amount of PF on cessation of employment.
3) Partial withdrawal of PF
A member who quits the employment and not employed for the continues at least two months, is permitted to withdraw only his own share of contribution, including interest earned thereon.
He will not be able to withdraw the employer's contribution, including interest thereon, until the retirement.
Note that the requirement of 'two months' period will not apply in case of female employees resigning from the service for the purpose of getting married or on account of pregnancy/ child birth.
4) Withdrawal Rules
Earlier, the retirement age was 55 years and one was allowed to withdraw 90% of their balance at the age of 54 years.
There are no answer to some questions though. What if the concerned person passes away before the age of 58? Will the benefeciary get the money? Not sure what kind of running around the beneficiary may have to make to get the money back.
There is little doubt on the intentions of the rule. It is all about helping individuals save money for retirement.
But, if a person is jobless for a prolonged period of time, his accumulated EPF money could help him tide over the crisis. What is the point in holding even the employer's money till the person attains the age of 58?