EPF or Employee provident fund account is a mandatory contribution to one's retirement fund in most of the organizations that have a workforce of over 10. The employee towards the account contributes 12% of his or her basic salary and a similar contribution is also made by the employer to an employee's EPF account. And in an event when the subscriber of the account meets unfortunate death, nominee or beneficiary specified by the account holder can make the claim.
Nonetheless, out of unawareness or expecting involvement of too many procedural tasks, nominee or legal heirs may show some reluctance in claiming EPF benefits. But to the relief of such beneficiaries, you can submit the claim against the EPF account of the deceased provident fund subscriber through the online route with much of ease. It is worth mentioning that the retirement fund body Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) grants the full EPF amount to the nominee in case the EPF accountholder dies.
Taking note of the hardships EPF account holders and beneficiaries have to confront, EPFO currently runs two online facilities
1. E-nomination platform: Through a circular dated September 12, 2019, EPFO announced the launch of its e-nomination facility that can be availed for updating or notifying nominees to the account by the EPF subscriber. It is to be noted that only those EPF members can use this facility whose UAN or universal account number is seeded with Aadhaar. The service is available at member sewa portal of EPFO.
Additionally, for the completion of e-nomination, beneficiary's aadhaar number is also to be provided mandatorily.
For the nomination, the EPF Act has defined the contours of family members who can be included in the scheme as nominee. So, as per the EPF Act- "family" includes- (i) in the case of a male member, his wife, his children (whether married or unmarried), his dependant parents and his deceased son's widow and children and ii) in the case of a female member, her husband, her children (whether married or unmarried), her dependant parents, her husband's dependant parents and her deceased son's widow and children.
2. Online form for EPF death withdrawal claim by the nominee: In such a case based on the one-time password or OTP received on one's aadhaar-linked mobile number, nominee or beneficiary of an EPF account of the deceased member can submit EPF Composite Death Claim Form.
Alongside some of the other forms that need to be filled include:
1. Member Nominee form 10D for pension amount. This is required in following cases
i) When the claimant or beneficiary is less than 25 years of age as on the date of death of the EPF member
ii) In a case when the subscriber had no family and had nominated the claimant for pension amount
iii) In case when at the time of death the member had no family and had not nominated anyone for pension.
2. Form 20: for final settlement of PF
3. Form 5IF for claiming the Employees' Deposit Linked Insurance Scheme (EDLI) benefit that accrues in cases when
i) The EPF member dies while in service
ii) The company with which the EPF member was working at the time of death was not exempt under the EDLI scheme as on his death date.
Also, the nominee or beneficiary can make death claim against the account offline by submitting the death claim form either to the EPFO or member's last employer.