HomeJAGRUK EMPLOYEESWhat Happens To Unclaimed PF Money?

What Happens To Unclaimed PF Money?

Every so often it happens that EPF members forget about the money in their PF account. This might be because they don’t keep a track of their PF account, UAN and other deeds. Since they do not have enough knowledge of EPF. Or maybe upon their death, their nominee is not aware of a PF account. Hence, the nominee never claims the PF money on behalf of the deceased member. This unclaimed PF money issue is widely prevalent in the country. As also stated in the 2015 budget speech by Late FM, Arun Jaitley, that some Rs 6000 crore unclaimed PF money lay in the PF accounts. This amount might have only increased by now. Thus, in this article, we discuss the issue of unclaimed PF money and how to resolve it.

EPF account timeline

When one resigns from a job to find a better one, two situations might take place. Firstly, either the person gets a new job immediately and they are able to merge their previous PF account with the new one. Or it might take them some time to find a new job wherein they might even try their hand at business. Eventually, the person will end up with a new job.

Before 2016, if a person was not working for 36 consecutive months, then his EPF account would be declared as “inoperative”. But post the 2016 EPF amendment, this clause has been resolved. Now the EPF account stays active even when the member is unemployed for 36 months consecutively. Member can also continue to get EPF interest 3 years after retirement.

Unclaimed PF money after retirement

If post-retirement, the person does not withdraw his PF money for 36 months, then the account becomes “inoperative” due to retirement/death/shifting abroad permanently. The unclaimed PF money lies in the EPF account for the next 7 years, where you can still withdraw it. Thereafter, EPFO sends the unclaimed PF money to Senior Citizens Welfare Fund. The unclaimed PF money stays there for the next 25 years for withdrawal. Learn how to withdraw PF money in PF Withdrawal Online Process | EPF Form 20.

If the unclaimed PF money is not withdrawn for a total of 32 years then it is transferred to the Central Government. It is further assumed, that the PF member has passed away. Also, he had no next of kin or nominee to claim the PF money. Here, it becomes difficult to claim the PF balance.

How to claim the PF money?

The last resort here is to file a case court. Only once the court delivers a verdict in your favour, can you claim the PF money. Hence, it is always recommended that whenever a person switches between jobs, that they merge their previous and new PF accounts. Additionally, all PF members must also file a nominee for their PF account. Otherwise, it becomes a legal hassle for the next of kin to claim the PF money upon the member’s passing. The nominee should also be informed of their status. So that they know to claim the PF money if the occasion arises.

Watch the process in the video below.

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Heena Siddique
Heena Siddique
Bibliophile. Turophile. Foodie. Tea enthusiast. Shopaholic. Sitcom addict. Movie buff.


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