The provision to withdraw money from EPF accounts was first announced last year in March 2020 under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY).
According to the withdrawal rules, EPFO members can take non-refundable withdrawals of up to three months’ basic earnings and dearness allowance, or 75 percent of the EPF account balance, whichever is smaller. Members, on the other hand, have the option to apply for smaller sums.
How to apply for withdrawal online
Step 1: Visit the Member e-Sewa portal: https://unifiedportal-mem.epfindia.gov.in/memberinterface/
Step 2: Login to your account by entering your UAN, password and captcha code.
Step 3: Go to Online services and select claim (Form -31, 19,10C and 10D)
Step 4: A new webpage will appear on your screen with all your details such as name, date of birth, and last four digits of your Aadhaar number. The webpage will ask you to enter your bank account number. Enter your bank account number in the required space and click on verify. A pop-up will appear on your screen asking you to give a ‘Certificate of undertaking’.
Step 5: Once the bank account number is verified, then click on ‘Proceed for online claim’.
Step 6: From the drop down menu, you will be required to select ‘PF advance (Form 31)’.
Step 7: You will be required to select purpose of withdrawal as ‘Outbreak of pandemic (COVID-19)’ from the drop down menu.
Step 8: Enter the amount required and upload the scanned copy of cheque and enter your address.
Step 9: A one-time password (OTP) will be sent on your mobile number registered with Aadhaar.
Step 10: Enter the OTP received by you via SMS.
Once the OTP is successfully submitted, the claim request will also be submitted. The money will be credited to your bank account only if the details match and your claim is accepted by the EPFO.
Withdrawing via EPFO’s Umang app
Step 1: Login to Umang App
Step 2: Select EPFO
Step 3: Select ‘Employee Centric Services’
Step 4: Select the option ‘Raise Claim’
Step 5: Enter your UAN details and click on ‘Get OTP’ to get one-time password to login in your account.
Step 6: Enter the OTP and click on login. Once you are successfully logged in to your account, enter last four digits of your bank account and select the member ID from the drop down menu. Click on ‘Proceed for claim’.
Step 7: You will be required to enter your address. Click on ‘Next’ once the correct details are entered.
Step 8: Upload the cheque image. Once all the details and required information is entered, then your claim will be filed.
“In such trying times, EPFO endeavours to lend a helping hand to its members by meeting their financial needs. Members who have already availed of the first COVID-19 advance can now opt for a second advance also. The provision and process for withdrawal of the second COVID-19 advance are the same as in the case of the first advance,” said the press release issued by the ministry last year.
“Considering the urgent need of members for financial support in these trying times, it has been decided to accord top priority to COVID-19 claims. EPFO is committed to settle these claims within three days of their receipt. For this, EPFO has deployed a system driven auto-claim settlement process in respect of all such members whose KYC requirements is complete in all respects. Auto-mode of settlement enables EPFO to reduce the claim settlement cycle to just 3 days as against the statutory requirement.”
EPFO pledges to settle these claims within three days of receiving them. EPFO has implemented a system-driven auto-claim settlement mechanism for all such members who have completed their KYC criteria in all aspects. The EPFO’s auto-mode of settlement allows it to decrease the claim settlement cycle to just three days, as opposed to the statutory requirement of 20 days.
So, even if you’ve already taken out a loan for any cause, including Covid, you can still request for a withdrawal from your EPF account for Covid emergency.