With every new job, you get a new EPF account. So, your EPF balance is left to the old account. That is why you are required to transfer PF amount from one account to another EPF account. Ideally, this transfer should be automatic as UAN remains the same in both the accounts.
But there can be many hurdles in the way of automatic EPF transfer. Your name, date of birth can mismatch. You may have two different UANs. Or KYC is not complete with the previous account. In such a situation, you have to apply for online PF transfer through the UAN member portal.
The online process is smooth and successful for 80% of the cases. But, there can be some complication. So, you should go for the offline PF transfer. Nevertheless, you should always try to transfer PF account balance, premature withdrawal may be easier but you would be in the disadvantage.
EPF Account Transfer / Merger Rules
Before diving into the PF transfer process, it would be useful to know the basic rules. You must know these rules before initiating the process of PF account merger or linking. Further, I would tell you the step by step online process of PF account linking.
No Time Restriction
Sometimes people want to know whether the can transfer PF balance of an older job. Would I lose interest for delay in the transfer? Let me clarify, that your EPF balance would keep getting an interest in whichever account it is. Also, you can initiate PF transfer any time after switching the job.
Transfer To Own Account
It is not possible to transfer your PF amount to any third person. Both of the accounts should belong to you. That is why the EPFO verifies the personal details before the fund transfer.
Pension Also Gets Transferred
You may know that EPS account is also clubbed with the EPF scheme. In fact, a part of the Employer’s contribution goes to the pension scheme. The amount accumulated to pension account also gets transferred to the new EPF account. With this transfer, the total service period is also added. The service period is a major factor to decide the pension amount after the retirement.
No Partial Transfer
The partial transfer of PF amount is not possible. The 100% of your amount gets transferred. One of my readers has asked me that whether she can transfer only 50% of the amount as she wants to withdraw 50% of the balance for her marriage. It is not possible. However, I have suggested her to use partial withdrawal facility after the transfer.
There Should Not be any Mismatch
As I have told that PF transfer is possible between the account of the same person. Hence, the name, father’s name date of birth should match. If there is any discrepancy, the transfer would not take place. In such a scenario, you should first rectify the personal details. It is possible to modify personal details through the UAN portal itself.
Online Process of PF Transfer
You can easily use the online PF transfer process but it requires the UAN. The online EPF transfer facility is available through the UAN member portal. You can access this portal by activating your UAN. You might know that EPFO has alloted UAN to every active EPF member. This is a universal account number which remains same throughout various jobs.
Eligibility For EPF Transfer
Besides the UAN, there are some other requirements for the online PF transfer.
- You must have activated the UAN. The activation process gives you access to the EPF member portal.
- You must have the registered mobile number at the time of EPF Transfer process. You register a mobile number during the UAN activation.
- Your Bank account number and IFSC code should be with the EPFO. You can check it at UAN portal.
- Your KYC documents should be approved.
- The previous or current employer must have the digital signature.
- The personal information should be the same in both the EPF account.
- Online EPF transfer is possible only if you are in the job. Your current employer should be contributing to the EPF account.
Step1 – Login At UAN Member Portal
The online PF transfer process starts with the login at UAN member portal. The URL of this portal is https://unifiedportal-mem.epfindia.gov.in/memberinterface/. In this page, you have to enter the UAN and password to log in. The password is set during the UAN activation process.
Step2- Open EPF Transfer Form
In the UAN dashboard search for the Online Services in the menu. It is the last option of Blue ribbon. Tap on ‘One Member- One EPF account’.
Step3- Check Details
In the next page, you would see the personal details of you. Verify the details and bank account number.
Step 4 – Choose Employer
In the next section, you have to choose the employer for verification. You can choose any of the employer (previous and present). But I would suggest for the Previous Employer.
Step 5 – Enter Your Details (UAN/ MID)
Now you have to enter the UAN or MID. The MID stands for Member ID. Tap on the ‘Get Details’. It would fetch details of your EPF account. Verify all the details.
Step 6 – Enter OTP
In this step, you have to enter the OTP. To get this password, you have to tap on ‘Get OTP’ button. It would send an OTP (One Time Password) to your registered mobile number. Enter that password into the given field.
Step 7 – Approval by Employer
Now the process is over for you. Next, the EPFO portal would send this application to your chosen employer for the verification. Once the employer approves your application, regional EPF office initiates the transfer process.
Offline EPF Transfer Process
This is the traditional method of PF transfer. You have to fill the form 13 and submit this form with the present or previous employer. After the verification, the employer forwards this form to the EPFO. The EPFO verifies the details and gets it authenticated by the previous employer (if the form is forwarded through the present employer). After the authentication, the EPFO Transfers the EPF balance from the previous account to present account.
- In this mode of EPF transfer, the UAN and Adhaar number are not mandatory.
- You can apply for EPF transfer even if there is some mismatch in personal details.
- In such cases, you have to attach the personal details rectification form.
- The form should be attested by the employer.
- Note the employer should be the same who has created the EPF account which carries some error.
EPF Transfer Form
Form 13 is used for EPF transfer. In this form, you have to give personal details. You have to enter the previous employment details and EPF account number. Along with this, you have to tell about the present employment. Take care and give details correctly. The EPF member of exempted establishment can also use this form for the transfer.
How Much Time Does PF Transfer Take?
Since the Online PF transfer, the time for settlement has come down. However, it also depends upon your employer. If your employer approves the transfer request promptly, the whole process completes in one week. But, the delay from the employer can stretch it.
However, EPF charter has prescribed a maximum of 10 days for the PF transfer. But, the actual period can be longer than this. Be prepared for that. By the way, The EPFO data tells us that it has settled 95% of the claims within 20 days.
PF Transfer Status Check
The EPF transfer takes less than one month. But, if required, you can check the status as well. If you have applied for online PF transfer, you can check the status from the beginning. The status of Physical EPF transfer can be checked once your application reaches to the regional EPF office.
To check the PF transfer status, login UAN member portal and tap on ‘Online Services’. The last option is for the status check of the claims. Using this way you can easily find out the status of your EPF transfer claim. If there is no update for many days, you can also file an online grievance. It would tell you the current situation of your application.
As a lost resort, you can also use RTI to know more about your PF transfer application.
Role of UAN in Transfer
A UAN or universal account number works for the various EPF account. You must give your existing UAN to the new employer. This assures the smooth PF transfer from one account to another.
When you give the UAN to a new employer, the employer uses that number and fetches all of your personal details registered under that UAN. Thus the personal details of your EPF accounts remain same. This ensures the matching of EPF account details. As you know the for EPF transfer, the personal details of the two account should match.
In fact, Often EPFO automatically transfers the PF balance of the previous account on the basis of the same UAN. So you are not required to apply for PF transfer.
Sometimes, an employee does not give the existing UAN to the new employer. It results in more than one UAN. However, if you apply for EPF transfer and all your personal details matches, the EPFO merges both the UAN along with the EPF account. The recent UAN continues and previous UAN vanishes.