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COVID-19: FM announces amendment in EPF Rules

Posted on 26 March 2020

Update:

Union Labour Ministry notifies amendment in EPF Scheme to allow withdrawal of non-refundable advance by EPF members in the event of outbreak of pandemic

EPFO directs its field offices to process claims promptly

Union Ministry of Labour and Employment has issued notification GSR 225(E) amending EPF Scheme 1952 to allow withdrawal of non-refundable advance by EPF members/subscribers in the wake of COVID -19 pandemic in the country. The notification permits withdrawal of upto the amount of basic wages and dearness allowance for three months or upto 75% of the amount standing to member's credit in the EPF account, whichever is less, in the event of outbreak of epidemic or pandemic.

COVID-19 has been declared pandemic by appropriate authorities for the entire country and therefore employees working in establishments and factories across entire India, who are members of the EPF Scheme, 1952 are eligible for the benefits of non-refundable advance. A sub-para(3) under para 68L has been inserted in the EPF scheme,1952.The amended scheme Employees Provident Fund (Amendment) scheme,2020 has come into force from 28 March,2020.

Following the notification, EPFO has issued directions to its field offices for promptly processing any applications received from EPF members to help them fight the situation. In its communication EPFO has stated that officers and staff must process claims of EPF subscribers promptly so that relief reaches the worker and his family to help them fight with COVID-19.

In the view of the outbreak of COVID-19 the Finance Minister announced various relief packages. In her announcement the FM also said that the EPF regulations will be amended wef 1/04/2020. Here are the two benefits that the government will be ginseng to workers covered under EPFO Scheme:

1. Workers will be given an advance of 75% of amount standing to the credit of the members in PF or 3 months of wages whichever is lower, which will be non-refundable.

2. The government will also pay EPF contribution of 12% on behalf of employers as well as employees for next three months for establishments which have upto 100 employees and 90% of whom are earning less than Rs 15,000 per month.

Also read: How to check your PF balance online and activate UAN?

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