All EPFO employees will be eligible for the benefits of non-refundable advance. This means, the employee will not have to put the money back into the provident fund (PF) account, as this is an advance.
EPFO has been sending customers SMS, saying “Settlement of Covid-19 advance claims are being given high priority by EPFO and, for faster relief, you can apply even if you have already made any other claim. We are processing other claims too, but disposal is affected due to lockdown.”
To help account holders withdraw money due to this pandemic, EPFO has recently released a set of FAQs, especially for those who want to make PF withdrawals. Additionally, as people are facing difficulties due to the lockdown because of the COVID-19, the government had earlier relaxed the EPFO rules regarding the withdrawal of PF money.
The new PF advance/withdrawal rule will apply to all employees working in establishments and factories across India, who are members of the EPF Scheme, 1952. All such employees will be eligible for the benefits of non-refundable advance. This means, the employee will not have to put the money back into the provident fund (PF) account, as this is an advance.
However, before applying for PF withdrawal, it’s important to know how much you will be able to withdrawn.
As per the EPFO notification, an employee will be permitted to make PF withdrawal of up to 75 per cent of the amount standing to the member’s credit in the EPF account or up to the amount of basic wages and dearness allowance for 3 months, whichever is less. Along with the employees, employers also match the PF contribution every month. The PF balance includes both the employee and the employer’s contribution along with the interest earned on their contributions.
For example, if your EPF balance on March 31, 2020 is Rs 8 lakh and your basic salary is Rs 45,000 per month, you will be able to withdraw Rs 1.35 lakh only. However, if the balance in your PF account is Rs 2 lakh and basic monthly salary amounts to Rs 52,000, you can withdraw only Rs 1.5 lakh.
In general, your basic wage/salary/basic pay consists of basic salary along with dearness allowance (DA), if any. To find out the actual amount, check your salary slip. To apply for PF withdrawal/advance, employees can either log in to the EPF India website or access the Unified Portal from his/her phone.