Often, when people change jobs, they end up creating new employee provident fund (EPF) accounts, instead of transferring the old one to the new employer. Part of the reason for this was that employees found the transfer process complicated and preferred to open a new account instead.
In an effort to make it easier for subscribers to transfer their accounts, the Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has introduced a new form to transfer the accounts. It is available on the EPFO’s website, for employers as well as employees.
The new declaration form (New Form No. 11) will replace the existing Form No. 11 (New). (Your read it right. Seems EPFO is out of ways to identify the ‘new’ on this form!)
The form requires information about the previous employment and the know-your-customer (KYC) details.
According to the EPFO, it has been observed since the launch of Universal Account Number (UAN, which is allotted to employees by the EPFO), that multiple UANs were being generated by the subscribers.
The EPFO found this out because many UANs, allotted by the employers, were not being updated with the date of exit. Obviously, many EPFO members were creating new UANs when they changed jobs. Another reason for generation of multiple UANs is that, sometimes the declarations (for example: phone number or marital status) made to the old employer do not match those provided to the new employer. And, if such an employee does not know her old UAN number, a new one will be created.
Not only the newer form is simpler to fill, it is also available as an e-form on the EPFO’s website www.epfndia.gov.in.
Besides transferring the account, the new form can also be used for transfer of accumulated funds from the old accounts to the new one associated with the new employer.
Earlier, in order to transfer the funds from one organisation to another, an employee had to fill a separate Form No. 13. The process was complex and transfer of funds usually took a long time. Because of that many employee preferred withdrawal their funds rather than transferring them to new account.
The step to simplify the transfer process will help in bringing down the premature withdrawals too.
However, only those members who have been allotted UAN, and whose KYC details have been digitally verified by the previous employer, are exempt from filling the Form No. 13 separately.
So those who still don’t have their UAN, should generate it. If your existing employer is not cooperating, you can generate it on your on too. EPFO has given facility to get the UAN online from its portal
At the end of September 2016, more than 28.9 million EPF members have activated their UAN on the UAN portal.