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PF Withdrawal:Rules and Regulations?

Updated on: 04 Jun, 2024 01:19 PM

The Employees' Provident Fund (EPF), also known as the Provident Fund (PF), serves as a mandatory savings and retirement scheme for employees that can be used at the time of retirement. As per the rules and regulations of EPF, employees can withdraw the entire EPF account balance once they retire. However, the Income Tax Act also provides for premature withdrawal of EPF subject to certain conditions. In this article, we explore the various provisions related to EPF withdrawal and how to withdraw through Form 15G for EPF withdrawal.

Recent Update: The interest rate under EPF has been revised to 8.25% for FY 23-24.

Employee’s Provident Fund Scheme/EPFO/PF Withdrawals

Employee’s Provident Fund Scheme is a social security scheme. You contribute towards this scheme during your employment period. You (the employee) contribute at least 12% of your basic salary towards the scheme. Your employer also contributes some amount towards your EPF which combinedly is known as ‘EPF corpus’.

This scheme is managed by the Employee’s Provident Fund Organization (EPFO). EPFO is responsible for online transfers, claims, and withdrawals. Initially, the employees had to undergo the tedious process of withdrawing and transferring PF since the employees received new member IDs with new employment. But with the advent of Universal Account Number (UAN), the process has been simplified to a great extent. UAN acts as an umbrella account to which all your PF accounts can be linked. With this, you can easily file claims for online transfer or PF withdrawal. You can also check for KYC details attached to your account.

PF withdrawals become a necessity when you are planning your retirement or leaving your job and taking a break. You might also need your EPF funds for unavoidable situations. For all these purposes, it is imperative that you know how to withdraw your funds and what are the requirements.


When Can One Withdraw EPF?

Complete PF Withdrawal

You can withdraw the entire EPF amount only under two conditions:

  • Upon retirement.
  • If you are unemployed for more than one month, you can withdraw 75% of the total accumulated amount. If unemployment continues for more than two months, you can withdraw the remaining 25%.

For complete PF withdrawal while switching employers, individuals need to be unemployed for 2 months or more after leaving their jobs.

Partial PF Withdrawal

You can make partial withdrawals from your EPF balance only under certain conditions. These are explained in the table below:

Purpose Years of Service Required Conditions for Partial Withdrawal
Medical purposes None For medical treatment of self, spouse, children, or parents
Marriage 7 years For the marriage of self, son/daughter, or brother/sister
Education 7 years For the education of the account holder or their child (post matriculation)
Purchase of site, flat, or house; construction of a house 5 years The property must be in the name of the employee, spouse, or jointly with the spouse
Home, site, or flat purchase or construction loan repayment 10 years The property must be registered in the name of the employee, spouse, or jointly with the spouse. Withdrawal is subject to submitting necessary documents related to the housing loan
House renovation 5 years The property must be registered in the name of the employee, spouse, or jointly with the spouse. This can be availed twice: a) First time - after 5 years of house completion b) Second time - after 10 years of the first withdrawal
Partial withdrawal before retirement 54 years The employee must be 54 years old and the withdrawal should be made within one year before retirement or superannuation.

Limit for Partial PF Withdrawals

Purpose of Withdrawal Limit for Withdrawal
Medical purposes Lower of:
  1. Six times the monthly basic salary
  2. The total employee’s share plus interest
Marriage Up to 50% of employee’s share of contribution to EPF plus interest
Education Up to 50% of employee’s share of contribution to EPF plus interest
Purchase of site, flat, or house; construction of a house Lower of:
  1. Up to 24 months’ basic wages plus dearness allowance (site purchase) or up to 36 months’ basic wages plus dearness allowance (house/flat purchase or construction)
  2. Total corpus consisting of employer and employee’s contribution with interest
  3. Total actual cost
Home, site, or flat purchase or construction loan repayment Least of:
  1. Up to 36 months’ basic wages plus dearness allowance
  2. Total corpus consisting of employer and employee’s contribution with interest
  3. Total outstanding principal and interest on housing loan
House renovation Least of:
  1. Up to 12 months’ basic wages plus dearness allowance
  2. Employee’s contribution with interest
  3. Total cost
Partial withdrawal before retirement Up to 90% of accumulated balance with interest

Steps to Follow for Premature PF Withdrawals

Given below are the steps that you need to follow to do premature PF withdrawals -

  • Step 1: Open the EPFO website or click on the link EPFO website
  • Step 2: Under the services tab, click on “for employees.” EPFO website
  • Step 3: Click on the “Member UAN” link to access the UAN portal. EPFO website
  • Step 4: Fill in your UAN ID, password and captcha displayed on the screen to sign in EPFO website
  • Step 5: Once you have successfully logged in, you will see your profile on the screen. Click on KYC under the “Manage” tab. EPFO website
  • Step 6: Once you get redirected to the page, check your KYC details by scrolling down to the "Digitally Approved KYC" section at the bottom of the page. Make sure all of the information is correct. EPFO website
  • Step 7: If all of the KYC details are accurate, click the "Online Service" link from the top menu to proceed with the withdrawal. From the drop-down menu, select "CLAIM (FORM-31, 19, and 10C)." EPFO website
  • Step 8: On the next screen, you will be prompted to input and validate the last four digits of your registered bank account number. EPFO website
  • Step 9: Click “Yes” on the certificate pop-up to proceed. EPFO website
  • Step 10: On the next page, select the "PF ADVANCE (FORM - 31)" option from the drop-down menu next to the "I wish to apply for" option for online fund withdrawal. EPFO website

Taxability of PF Withdrawal

EPF withdrawals are tax-free if an employee has contributed to the EPF account for five consecutive years. If there is a break in the five years of contributions, the EPF withdrawal amount becomes taxable for that financial year.

TDS is deducted if an employee withdraws EPF before completing five years and the amount exceeds Rs. 50,000. The TDS rates are as follows:

  • TDS of 10% is deducted if the employee withdraws more than Rs. 50,000 before completing five years and provides their PAN card.
  • If the employee does not provide their PAN card, a TDS of 30% is deducted from the withdrawal amount.
  • No TDS is deducted if the employee submits Form 15G/15H. Form 15G can be downloaded from the EPFO portal or major bank websites.

No TDS is deducted when an employee withdraws EPF after completing five years of continuous service, regardless of the withdrawal amount.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q- How long does the withdrawal process usually take?

The time required for withdrawal usually depends upon the mode of withdrawal. The process will be faster and easier if your KYC details are verified. If you have applied for withdrawal via online means, the process will take a maximum of 10 days. If you have applied via offline means, you will receive your PF withdrawals within 20 days.


Q- What are the withdrawal rules issued by the EPFO?

Some of the basic withdrawal rules issued by the EPFO are:

  • If your retirement is due in a year, you can withdraw 90% of the funds from the EPF corpus, given that you are at least 54 years old.
  • If you are unemployed for 1 month, you can withdraw 75% of the corpus funds. The remaining amount can be transferred to your EPF account.
  • If you are withdrawing before 5 years of continuous employment, then your withdrawal will be subject to tax.

Q- Can PF be withdrawn during employment?

Full PF withdrawals are not permitted during employment. During employment, you can only file for partial withdrawals and the reasons should be listed and approved by the EPFO.


Q- How can I check the status of my PF withdrawal online?

To check the status of your PF withdrawals, follow the steps mentioned below:

  • Go to the EPFO portal by clicking on the link mentioned below: https://www.epfindia.gov.in/site_en/
  • Select options in the order mentioned: Our services >> For Employee’s >> Know your PF status
  • This will take you to another screen where you will have to put in your credentials to check your PF status. Fill in your UAN and captcha, and then click on ‘search’.
  • You will be asked to fill in your PF account number, your establishment code, state of your PF office, and PF office from the dropdown menu on the next step.
  • Submit the information, and the status of your PF account will be displayed on the screen.

Q- How can I check my PF balance via SMS?

To check your PF balance via SMS, drop an SMS to 7738299899 in the format mentioned below:
Type ‘EPFOHO UAN’ and send it to the number mentioned above.


CA Abhishek Soni
CA Abhishek Soni

Abhishek Soni is a Chartered Accountant by profession & entrepreneur by passion. He is the co-founder & CEO of Tax2Win.in. Tax2win is amongst the top 25 emerging startups of Asia and authorized ERI by the Income Tax Department. In the past, he worked in EY and comes with wide industry experience from telecom, retail to manufacturing to entertainment where he has handled various national and international assignments.

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