On 1st December EPFO opened its online facilities to its subscribers to allow them to file their applications directly to the EPFO without the employer’s attestation for withdrawals.
The current system requires the subscribers to submit claims manually through their present or former employers for withdrawing their PF. It was mandatory for the forms to be attested by the employer for this purpose.
To avail this facility the subscribers would be required to have or hold an activated “Universal (or portable PF) Account Number (UAN)”, this also requires to be seeded with the Know Your Customer (KYC) details (which includes the subscriber’s bank account and Aadhar number)
The EPFO has stated that they would be starting this facility (of online withdrawal) within this fiscal year.
For employees who have activated their UAN, are required to submit claims in Form-19, Form-IOC and Form 31 directly to the Commissioner without the attestation of their employees for speedy settlement of claims, and has been made operational with immediate effect.
So essentially, the online facility shall be started shortly, while the EPFO has done away with the attestation required by former employees. Until the online facility is live, the subscribers may submit their forms mentioned above, MANUALLY to their respective provident fund commissioner
EPFO authorities stated that the simplified withdrawal process is to work as a catalyst to persuade more employers to get their KYC done and activate their UAN. According to the EPFO website, 2.13 crore subscribers have activated their UAN’s and 5.56 crores UAN’s have been allotted thus far. It has been reported that forms are considerably shorter than previous ones which ran 2-3 pages.
Keeping with the times, the EPFO, trying to be more subscriber friendly has made the process easier for employees and it speeds up the entire process from filing to actually receiving provident funds.