Has your Employees Provident Fund (EPF) account been lying idle for over 36 months? Now you can continue to earn interest on it, suggests a report in ToI. According to the report, the Labour Ministry has come up with a new notification on November 11, which states that an individual can continue earning interest on his/her EPF account even if it has been inoperative for 36 months or more. The notification reportedly states that an EPF account will continue to be seen as operative even if employment is terminated. The account holder will earn interest unless he/she seeks to withdraw the accumulated amount, or joins another job in 2 months. In case a new job is taken up, and the new employer is covered under the EPF scheme, then the old account can be transferred under the new employment.
Earlier, if you quit your job and did not take up employment till 2 months, or did not transfer your account to the new employment, then the account was considered dormant after 36 months, and hence failed to earn interest. With the new notification, this provision has been done away with.
The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) is in the process of implementing the next version of Universal Account Number (UAN) or UAN 2.0. The UAN programme was initiated in 2014 to allot a single number to members which would be used for EPF purposes for all employments. According to the EPFO, the next version of UAN being worked on would involve generation and linking of UAN of members in his various employments and its integration with next version of Electronic challan-cum-return (ECR) and Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana (PMRPY) scheme.
Earlier, in two back-to-back moves as a follow-up of a meeting with Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, the EPFO has sought to substantially ease the income security for post-retirement years of its members, and their families. Firstly, the Central Provident Fund Commissioners (CPFC), V P Joy, who heads EPFO, issued instructions to all its officers to ensure that provident fund dues in case of death claims are cleared within 7 days of the claim being lodged. This was quickly followed by another set of instruction by the CPFC that “PF claim settlement amount must invariably be credited to the member accounts on or before the date of retirement.”