Here’s everything you need to know about linking multiple EPF accounts through UAN. Read on.
The introduction of the UAN in the EPF has made all processes related to the EPF easier and simplified. What is UAN? It stands for Universal Account Number and is a 12-digit unique number given to EPF members. Using the UAN, you can link all your PF accounts under your UAN account.
With a UAN in place, you no longer need to keep a track of multiple PF accounts with past and present organisations. All you need is a UAN. Not just that, UAN can also facilitate the transfer of funds from one PF account to another and make it possible for you to make withdrawals and check your EPF balance.
By linking your Aadhaar card to UAN, you don’t even need the signature of your employer to initiate a transfer or make a withdrawal. In short, the introduction of UAN to the EPF has benefited employees in numerous ways.
Advantages Of UAN For Employees
Here are the major benefits of linking all your PF accounts with UAN:
- No Involvement Of Employer In PF Withdrawals
Currently, if you make any request for PF withdrawal, it has to pass through your previous employer and then has to be signed and forwarded to the EPFO. However, with UAN in place, the employer’s intervention is reduced.
It makes it possible for the PF money in your previous account to be automatically transferred to the new PF account after the KYC verification is complete.
Additional Reading: How To Withdraw Your EPF Without Your Employer’s Signature
- No Transfer Of Funds Required
Before the introduction of UAN, transferring the PF amount from one employer account to another used to be a lengthy and tedious process. Now, there’s no need to transfer funds at all.
To change the accounts, all you need to do is share your KYC and UAN details with the new employer. Once these details are verified by them, the PF amount from the old account is automatically transferred to the new account.
For old PF accounts which were opened before the UAN allotment, the transfer is still done through either digital or physical means.
- SMS Alerts For Easy Management
By registering on the EPF portal, you will receive SMS alerts from the EPFO when a contribution is made. These alerts will be very similar to those you get on your phone every time your bank Savings Account is debited or credited. You can also check your total balance anytime by downloading the PF passbook from the EPF portal by mentioning your UAN.
Enhanced Effectiveness Of Employee Pension Scheme
Many people prefer to withdraw their PF amount from one account while switching jobs because the withdrawal process is simpler than PF transfer. However, an important point to remember is that when the PF money is withdrawn, the fund contributed towards Employee Pension Scheme is also withdrawn.
This can greatly impact the pension that you receive after retirement. Therefore, instead of withdrawing your PF, transferring the money can result in greater pension money after retirement.
Additional Reading: Tips To A Financially Peaceful Retirement!
Reasons For Employees Having Two UANs
In certain cases, it is possible that an employee has two separate UANs. As per the rules of EPF, this is not allowed. However, an employee could have two UANs in the following cases:
- If the employee refused to share his or her UAN with their new company. This has happened in many cases as employees prefer to shield their past issues with their employers and choose to get a new UAN rather than submitting the details of their UAN with their previous company.
- If the previous company has not mentioned the exit date on an employee’s previous PF account and UAN. The employer has to mandatorily state the last working day on an employee’s UAN. In case they don’t, the new company begins the procedure of getting the employee a new UAN.
What Do You Need To Link Multiple EPF Accounts?
In order to link multiple EPF accounts, the first thing you need to do is—get an activated UAN (if you don’t already have it) and make sure that your currently active EPF account is linked to the UAN where the money has to be transferred. Additionally, your KYC details need to be verified by your current employer.
EPF will also provide an alphanumeric PF account number linked to UAN. The first two entries will depict the Regional PG Office where your company is contributing money. The next entry will be in digits and will comprise the employer’s code and their account number.
Additional Reading: Proposed EPF Rules
Ways To Merge Two UANs
There are two ways to do this. One is to immediately report the case to your current employer or write to the EPFO regarding the issue. You can email the issue to the following ID – firstname.lastname@example.org.
While doing so, you need to state both your previous and current UAN. Once the EPFO verifies both accounts, it will block the previous UAN and keep the current one active. Once the old UAN is blocked, the employee has to raise a claim to the EPFO to transfer the funds from the previous account to the active UAN.
The second way involves the following step:
- The first step is to raise a transfer claim from the previous EPF account to the present EPF account. This can be done on the OTCP portal on the EPFO’s member portal.
- The EPFO will then verify the transfer claim and make a note of both the UANs linked to the EPF account.
- Once the transfer has been made, the EPFO will block the previous UAN. The deactivated UAN will be of no use from then on.
- The process of merging the UAN accounts is usually done automatically – even without a request from the employee.
- Once the EPFO verifies the new UAN, they will link the UAN to the employee’s EPF account.
- The EPFO will contact the employee via SMS, and alert them that the old UAN has been deactivated and request the employee to activate the new UAN if they haven’t done it yet.
Additional Reading: Aadhaar Number Mandatory For EPF
If an employee has faced any difficulties with the previous account, where the employer has failed to make contributions for example, upon raising a claim, the money will be remitted to the employee’s new UAN. Activating a new UAN doesn’t mean that all past arrears will be forgotten as the EPFO can link both UAN accounts and facilitate transfers and contributions if need be.
Comparing both methods, the second method is simpler as most steps of the procedure are automated. All that the employee has to do is raise a claim with the EPFO for the transfer of funds and the rest is done automatically on the portal.
However, for the first method, although the employee has mailed the EPFO, there are chances that the issue might not meet an end. Hence, opting for the second method is a safer and better choice.
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