12 Top Employee Provident Fund Questions Answered

Last Updated – 22 Jan 2022

Are you a salaried person!! if yes, then you must be holding an Employee Provident Fund (EPF) Account with the EPFO. It is mandatory to own an EPF account if you are in a job and draws a salary of up to Rs.15,000 per month. EPF is optional for individuals drawing a salary of more than Rs.15,000 per month.

The EPF is maintained solely by the Employees Provident Fund Organization of India (EPFO) and any organization employing more than 20 persons is necessarily required to get registered with the EPFO.

The main purpose of the EPF account is to encourage employees to save & invest money for future needs like education of the child, marriage and of course retirement purposes.

Answers to Top FAQs on Employee Provident Fund

 #1. Is Contribution to Employee Provident Fund Mandatory?

Yes, It is mandatory to have an EPF account by the employer for the employees who have a basic salary plus dearness allowance is up to Rs.15,000. And those who are earning above Rs.15,000 is not compulsory but may contribute voluntarily.

The employee contributes 12% of basic salary along with dearness allowance (DA) in the EPF account. There’s a provision of lower contribution of 10% in case the organization has less than 20 employees or if the organization comes under specific industries such as Beedi, Brick, and similar ones.

The employer also contributes a similar amount (12% of employee’s basic salary plus DA) but divided into 3 parts-

  • 8.33% of such employer contribution goes towards Employee Pension Scheme (“EPS”)
  • Rest of 3.67% is added to the EPF account of the employee.  Max. amount of Rs. 1,250 per month if the salary of the employee is 15,000 or more.
  • The employer also contributes 0.50% towards Employees’ Deposit Linked Insurance (“EDLI”) account of the employee.

Let’s calculate EPF contribution with the following example in which the salary of an employee is Rs. 20,000.

Basic Salary + Dearness Allowance = Rs. 20,000

Employee’s monthly contribution in EPF = 12% of Rs. 20,000 = Rs. 2,400

Employer’s monthly contribution in EPS (subject to the limit of 1,250) = Rs. 1,250

Employer’s monthly contribution in EPF = ( 2,400 – 1,250) = Rs. 1,150

Total EPF monthly contribution =  2,400 +  1,150 = Rs. 3,550

#2. What is Universal Account Number?

Universal Account Number (UAN) is a 12-digit number that the Employee Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) provides to an employee. UAN of an employee remains the same throughout life irrespective of the number of jobs he/she changes.

Every time an employee switches job, EPFO allots a new member identification number (ID), which will be linked to the UAN. You can get a new member ID by submitting the UAN to the new employer. Once the member ID is created, it gets linked to the UAN of the employee.

You can also read- Everything about UAN for PF account.

#3. What are the Tax-Benefits of EPF contribution?

You can get a tax benefit of up to Rs. 1.50 lakh u/s 80C of Income Tax Act, 1961. EPF investment is a completely tax-free income including the contribution, interest accrued and withdrawals are exempted from the income tax.

However, premature withdrawal (withdrawal before 5 years of continuous contribution) is taxable.

#4. What is the Break-up of EPF Contribution

As per the EPF Act, 1952, the monthly contribution of employee and employer would be divided in the following way:

Top Employee Provident Fund Questions Answered

So if your basic salary plus dearness allowance is Rs.15,000 than the contribution would be proportioned in the following way:

Employee Provident FundRs.1,800Rs.550.5
Employees Pension Scheme0Rs.1,249.5
Employee Deposit Linked Insurance0Rs.75

#5. What is the current interest rate on EPF

The current rate of interest is 8.50% p.a. for the year 2020-2021. The interest is compounded yearly.

The point to be noted here is that the interest is calculated only on the EPF part, not on EPS. So if your contribution towards EPS is Rs.1,800 (12%) and your employer contribution towards EPF is Rs.550 (3.67%) and Rs. 1250 (8.67%) towards EPS, then the interest of 8.65% would be calculated on the amount of Rs.2,350 (1,800 + 550).

#6. Which one is better – EPF Vs. PPF?

Employee Provident Fund is only for salaried person and Public Provident Fund is for everyone despite his earning source. A salaried person can enjoy the benefit of both EPF as well as PPF while a self-employed person can only take the benefits of PPF.

S.No.Comparison ParameterEPFPPF
1Who can Invest?Only Salaried person.Any Indian, except NRIs.
2Quantum and Frequency of InvestmentStatutory is 12% of basic +DA.

Can voluntarily increase the contribution.

Frequency is monthly from the salary itself.

Any Amount between Rs.500/- and Rs.1,50,000/- per year.

A maximum of 12 contributions can be made per year subject to a minimum of Rs.100 per transaction.

3Current Returns (w.e.f 1st April, 2015)8.65% p.a.7.90% p.a.
4Loan OptionsPartial Withdrawal.Up to 50% of the balance. Loan facility available from the 3rd year till the completion of  6th year.
5Period of InvestmentAt the time of retirement or resignation, whichever is earlier.

Can transfer account to new company till retirement.

In case of death, the amount is paid to nominee/legal heirs.

Initially, 15 years which can be extended indefinitely in the blocks of 5 years after that.

In case of death, the amount is paid to nominee/legal heirs.

6Tax benefitsTax exemption under section 80C of Income Tax Act.

Maximum Limit of Tax Benefit is up to Rs. 1.50 lakh.

Maturity is also tax-free if the contribution is withdrawn after completing 5 years of continuous service including jobs changed.

Tax exemption under section 80C of Income Tax Act.

Maximum Limit of Tax Benefit is up to Rs. 1.50 lakh

Maturity is also tax-free.

The unique aspect of PPF

The other unique feature of PPF is that in case of insolvency, the PPF account cannot be used to pay off debts in the settlement process.

Also read – What is Salary Slip

#7. How to Check my EPF Balance Online?

There are multiple ways to check EPF balance online.

1. Go to EPFO portal. Click on the “ePassbook” option available on the homepage. A login page will appear. Fill your UAN and password to log in. After logging in, you will find all the member IDs linked to your UAN. This passbook will provide EPF account balance and contribution details made by you and your employer.

You can also register for ePassbook (if using for the first time) but make sure your employer has activated your UAN number and password. The ePassbook will be made available after 48 hours of the request.

2. The second method to check EPF balance is via SMS. All you have to do is click on the link below: http://www.epfindia.com/site_en/KYEPFB.php

  • Select your PF office state and then your Regional PF Office.
  • Enter your alphanumeric EPF account number (like RJ/UDR/123456/000/1234), your name and the mobile number on which you would like to get the EPF Balance Message.

As soon as you hit the submit button, you would get the balance message on your mobile screen.

3. Using UMANG App. 

Step 1: Download and install the application UMANG from Google Play Store or the App Store.

Step 2: Open the UMANG app on your mobile and select EPFO.

Step 3: Click on the “Employee Centric Services”.

Step 4: Click on the option View Passbook to check your EPF balance.

Step 5: Enter your UAN and then click Send OTP to send an OTP to your mobile number. Enter the OTP you receive and click Login.

Step 6: Select the Member ID for which you want to check the balance.

Step 7: You passbook will be displayed on the screen along with your EPF balance

For more details, you can read my article – How to check EPF balance.

#7. How and when can I withdraw my EPF account money?

You can withdraw your EFP money for various reasons but only by fulfilling certain conditions, non-compliance of which would result in levying of penalty charges.

Apart from the above-stated conditions, if a person is taking a VRS at the age of 54 and above, then he can take out EPF money only up to 90% of the balance.

#8. How Premature Withdrawal from EPF account is taxed?

Understand the terms first of all.

Premature withdrawal means taking money out from the EPF account before 5 years of continuous service.

Continuous service means a continuous contribution for 5 years.

You (being an employee) can get tax exemption only if you contribute to the EPF account for 5 continuous years. If there’s a break in the 5-year contribution then EPF will be considered taxable for that financial year.

For example, if you left the job after 3 years but withdraw EPF corpus after 5 years, even then you would have to pay tax on the amount accrued.

Premature withdrawal attracts TDS if the amount exceeds Rs.50,000. TDS is 10% if you produce your PAN card details, otherwise you will get a TDS cut of 30%.

#9. What is Illegal Withdrawal of EPF Money

As per EPF rules, withdrawing of EPF money at the time of switching jobs is illegal.

You can withdraw a 75% amount after 1 month of unemployment. And withdraw complete corpus only and only if you have not joined a new job within two months of quitting the previous one.

It’s illegal to withdraw complete money by hiding about your employment information.

The Indian government, however, has added a new clause to prohibit the illegal practice. An employee has to produce an unemployment certificate (duly attested by a gazetted officer) after completing 2 months of unemployment if he wants to withdraw the complete amount.

#10. Can I contribute more than 12% towards EPF

As per EPF Act, 1952, the minimum contribution of employee towards EPF account should be at least 12% but one can contribute up to 100% of your salary plus DA. This extra contribution from employee does is called VPF (Voluntarily Provident Fund) but remember this does not bound employer to contribute more. Employer can continue to contribute up to statutory limit of 12%.

However, many employers do not allow the extra contributions of the employee towards EPF. So you have to file an application with the Regional Provident Fund Commissioner.

#11. Is there any other benefit of EPF?

Another benefit of keeping EPF account is that the account holder gets a life insurance cover of Rs.2,50,000 (earlier Rs. 60,000). Maximum cover is capped at Rs. 6,00,000.

You get life cover under the Employees Deposit Linked Insurance (EDLI) Scheme and the employer has to contribute 0.50% of your monthly basic pay as premium for your life cover.

But if your company is providing life insurance benefits or group insurance policy to you then it is exempted from contributing to this scheme.

#12. How to make any grievance of EPF?

Employees can use the EPF grievance system to file a complaint against any kind of issue regarding their EPF account.

The easiest way is to register a grievance on the EPF portal.

Top Employee Provident Fund Questions Answered

Here are the steps to register a complaint-

  • Open the EPF grievance portal and click on ‘Register grienance’.
  • Enter UAN number and security code. Click on ‘Get Details’.
  • Fill the complaint form and select the category under which your complaint falls.
  • You can upload supporting documents for better understanding.
  • once submitted, you will get a unique registeration number to track your complaint status. You can also send reminders in case of delay in getting solution using the same unique number.

The other way to file a grievance is by reaching to the regional office and file a complaint or you can post a grievance letter to the regional office through registered post.

I have tried to cover all the major questions asked about EPF account. Let me know if you have more queries about EPF, I would like to add more queries to help out people.

About Raghav Gupta

I have done B.com and MBA in finance, so have a keen interest in personal finance. You will find information related to investment, credit cards, taxation and banking on SimpleInterest.

102 thoughts on “12 Top Employee Provident Fund Questions Answered”

  1. An employee has worked in Company A, B & C. He has applied for Withdrawal (Form 19) after he left Company C, but he has not transferred the Balance from A & B to C. How he can withdraw the amount from A & B. (Note: He has not applied for Form 10C)

  2. I was working in Bangalore till 2010 for three years and went abroad to UK on onsite transfer and there are no contributi9ns to my elf account after that date. Now can I contribute directly to my EPF account? If so what is the limit per month/ year?

    • Indiresh, If you dont’ contribute for regular 3 years or more, EPF account is considered inactive. Now as you have relocated to UK, it is not clear that whether you have now working in India or still abroad, If you are still abroad you can’t take benefit of EPF because you would be getting benefits of social security schemes of the country you are residing.

      If you have returned and working in India now, you have to contact your HR or employer to start a new EPF account and reach out EPFO to fill Form 13 to transfer your unsettled funds to new pf account.

  3. Sir, I joined a company in Aug 2014 recently company has takeover by another company so I resigned in Jun 2019. my old company deposited EPF contribution upto May 2019. in company site shown my date of exit June 2019. till date new company didnot paid EPF contribution for the month of June 2019. in this first week of Oct 2019 I applied for PF Withdrawal online but after 15 days I received a message your PF withdrawal rejected. what I have to do now for withdrawal my PF amount?

  4. I have worked in a Private School for 4 years and 11 months. i have EPF contribution for this period. Now i am working for central government. Presently, I am entitled for NPS and not EPF. I have completed 2 months after leaving my previous job. I am planning to withdraw the amount. What percentage of total amount (sum of my contribution, employer’s contribution and pension contribution.should I get after withdrawal? How much % of TDS will it attract?

  5. Hi,
    Previously by basic salary was less than 15000 but after appraisal, it is greater than 15000.
    So can I opt out of EPF in the same company

    Please someone reply

  6. I have transferred amount from old pf to new pf.
    Its transferred.
    I have worked almost 4 years in last company.
    and also almost 4 years in current company. So total exp. is almost 8 years.

    But my in UAN login pf service history shows only total of 4 years of current company only.
    No record or years added of previous company during PF transferred.

    Due to this PF advance options which require more than 5 years of service are disabled in UAN account.

    Please tell me the solution.

  7. Sir, I served in Govt. Co. Since 1987 to 2004 because Co. Shut down in2004, and my age 39yrs at that time, and there after I have joined another pvt. Co till today’s date since 2007, as such I have another EPF account opened by my new employer. I have not withdrawn any PF from my previous PF account till date.
    So now my query is that Is I am earning interest on my previous PF account balance till the date.

  8. My name is Raju Thapa

    i have work in ACI Pvt. Ltd. in 9 years first3 year my pf deducted vinod thapa my home name after 3 year i correct
    in pf a/c submit affidavit my real name raju thapa my pf deduct in my certificate name raju thapa i have left ACI since 3 years i have submit withdraw form but pf dipartment cancel my form . please help how i withdraw my pf ??

  9. Sir, I have one UAN account and under that o have current employer who is depositing the of amount and I am also doing another job during night time and he is also wants create a new account under same UAN and add PF. Is it ok.

  10. i have joined new company but due to some problem i had resign this company in 25days only.Now this company has linked pf account in my previous uan no thats ok,but the main problem is that this company linked pf account in my previous uan no but pf money not yet depisited,so thats my i could not withdraw my previous pf money online due to this new company pf account.Because present pf account has no amount.So i want to delate only this present pf account.So that i could withdraw my previous pf money.

    • Hi Bijay

      In this case your employer have to update profile that you are not working with the company , then you are able to withdraw your Pf Amount.

  11. Sir i want to apply for pf but employer is not interested to put my exit date bcox of anger issues of leaving the job.and i cant apply for pf ..plz help

  12. I had opted for advance PF withdrawal by selecting the reason as illness but the filed officer has rejected the claim. Kindly let me know is there any alternate for me to withdraw the PF amount

    • Hi salar,
      In your case visit the PF office and asked the reason for rejection then they will update you & they will ask you to submit some form as per the issue. After submitting that it will take 10-15 days.

  13. From same company i got two pf account link with same UAN number… From same company some amount pf amount credited on one account and remaining amount credited on other account by the company.. When i try for pf advance then message says ” Something went wrong “…. If i want to merge this two account, when i try then message occurs previous and present employer must not be same.. Due to same employer i cant merge these two pf account… Please help what i do??

  14. Sir, Our company paying PF contribution Actual on Basic + DA from 2013. We do not follow the ceiling limit 15K, now company want to pay PF contribution on ceiling limit 15K to save the cost, So can we change PF contribution from actual to ceiling limit? Plz suggest us.

    • My. Basic salary plus DA exeeds Rs. 15000/_ So our company is not giving the PF. But I want PF facility. Pl. Suggest what to do to start PF.

  15. 10 yrs and 4 months I worked in a private hospital.after I resigned from the hospital .I got my PF partial amount . remaining Money gone to pension .after that I got some papers from pf office in that mention I WL get ****some amount after 58 yrs. So my question is whether I can withdraw that amount now.not fully partial amount.

  16. hi i have 2 uan numbers
    old uan account is kyc approved and not having relieving date
    new uan account is having relieving date approved but kyc not approved

  17. How can i reset my password without entering mobile number as i changed it? Also if i goes through enterting name,dob and gender it showing “gender information not available in system”. Please suggest another way to reset my password.

  18. i claim epf advance in 12th june.now i check the status in portal last ten days i received msg from staus of under poress but today onceagain i check portal but return msg is ‘sorry no result return by the department for the inputs.my doubt is get my advance in my account or not.plz answer me.

  19. Sir mere father ek company me job karte the to us company ka niyokta change ho gaya 2010 me to naya niyokta sabhi employers se resign lene laga our logo be majburan de dia our log uske khilaf case kar dia us time kuchh logo ka age ho gaya tha to pension ban gaya our Jo logo ka age nahi hua tha unka pension nahi ban gaya our an niyokta me pas Jane par kahta hai ki case wapas lend me lia tabhi form par signature karega kya kare please help sir

  20. Sir my service is less than 5 years but PAN No is not merged with EPFO portal and PF amount is 22000/ if i apply through on line to withdraw my PF amount how much amount will detect as TDS kindly tell me

  21. Sir, humlogo Ka Sumo company mei chal raha tha. Aur ab tender khatam ho gaya(October 2017)hai. Ab mei PF close karna chantey hain, iske liye kya karengey, Jaise ki mere ko koi rupaya nahi bharna Hoga.

  22. My epf withdraw form 19 and 10 is submitted success fully on date 27.2.18. When I will get amount in my account.

  23. I have worked in intelli group hyderabad and I do not have the establishment no and ext no. I have my old pf number. Only. How to get my new number

  24. I have a basic salary of 25320/- but pf is not calculated according to 12% of my basic salary and my epf amount is 1800/-. So is that mandatory for the employer to provide the epf amount as 12% of basic salary?


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