How to Withdraw Employee Provident Fund (EPF)

Are you looking for how to withdraw employee provident fund money kept with your last employer?

Do you know the rules related to EPF withdrawal in India? Do you know the EPF withdrawal tax rules?

I will answer all these questions, as I have withdrawn my EPF balance twice in my career so far. And I think my experience will be useful for many readers of this blog.

Basic EPF Withdrawal rules

Before proceeding further I think one should know few basic EPF withdrawal rules after resignation.

  • One can’t apply for EPF amount withdrawal during service. When you leave a company, at that time only you will be able to withdraw EPF balance.
  • One can’t apply for EPF balance immediately after resigning the company. There is a waiting period of 2 months. After that only you can go for EPF withdrawal.
  • If you withdraw EPF money before completing 5 year, then the amount is taxable.
  • One can’t apply for EPF withdrawal online. You have to go via your previous employer only.
  • Recently with the introduction of UAN (Universal Account Number), the EPF transfer process is going to be very easy. And very soon we may expect a procedure to withdraw EPF online also.

Employee Provident Fund Withdrawal Procedure

The EPF withdrawal procedure will completely depend up on how co-operative your previous employer is. If they have a proper process then you will get the money quickly. Or else you may have to face some difficulty.

In fact for few organizations, there is a dedicated EPF Body, which handles the entire work. In that case also the whole process completes very fast. But if your employer doesn’t support you, your EPF withdrawal process becomes really difficult.

Let’s check out the common steps & procedure to withdraw EPF amount in India.

1) Make sure that before leaving the company, you have taken all necessary contacts and documents needed for EPF withdrawal. As you have to wait up to 45-60 days after leaving the company before applying for EPF money.

Next, download or collect the EPF withdrawal form – form 19 & form 10c. You may collect these forms from your company portal. Otherwise visit EPFO website to download them.

2) Fill the 2 forms carefully; provide every mandatory information like EPF account number, your name, address, mobile number and bank account number (Nationalized Bank) where you are expecting the money. Previously EPF department used to send cheques only, but now one can get the money in his/her bank account by NEFT transaction also.

Tip: Do not take this form lightly. When I have applied for the first time, the application got rejected due to small mistake and it came back to me again. Due to that I had to re-apply EFP withdrawal and entire process took more than 7 month to get the money.

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There will be another form along with them where you will authorize them to deposit the amount on behalf of you in your bank account. As the money will be sanctioned as a cheque and then deposited in your account. So be careful while filling that form as well.

3) Next step is, take xerox copy of the filled forms set, to keep with you for future proof. Then send the forms to previous employer office or PF office as instructed by your previous employer. Every company has its own procedure to deal with it. Some company have their own PF trust offices where you can send them directly, otherwise companies will collect all these documents from you and then verify from their end and finally submit them to EPF India office on behalf of you.

4) After submission of these forms you are actually done with your part. You can always communicate with the PF body of your previous company, where you have mailed the filled up forms. Check your EPF withdrawal status every 2-3 weeks, if it takes time to get your EPF money.

How much time it takes to withdraw EPF?

5) As soon as they receive the form, their internal team will verify the details and submit to EPF department of India. After that your previous company’s responsibility is done. In case any issue, you have to contact to direct PF office only.

I have received the EPF money very quickly when I applied for the 2nd time. It took hardly 2 month to receive the money. So things are improving. 🙂

Should I withdraw my EPF Amount?

There are many advices regarding this question, but I believe if you have continued your EPF account for more than 5 years and changing the company then it is better to withdraw the money. You can withdraw the balance and then put in your own PPF account or invest in better product like mutual fund. The reason I said this is, it is always better to control your money on your own rather than depending on others.

Anyway, it is my thought and not necessary that everyone should agree with that. I would love to know more from the readers of this blog, EPF withdrawal or transfer account – which one is better. Visit official EPFO website to know your EPF Balance, latest changes in EPF rules and many useful how to guides.

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