Salaried individuals often tend to switch companies. The change in employers can make it difficult to remember and track the total provident fund balance. However, there’s a way you can keep yourself easily informed and also consolidate your EPF amount.
The EPFO (Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation) offers a 12-digit unique number known as UAN (Universal Account Number) that can be activated online to keep track of your account details.
UAN acts as an umbrella for multiple member IDs. Member IDs are assigned by the EPFO to the registered companies which helps companies to contribute towards the employee’s EPF balance.
Just like a bank’s passbook, the total EPF amount in your account can be viewed through “e-passbook” link on the EPFO website.
But the problem is that for every member ID the balances are shown separately. The screenshot of the EPFO account of an employee who has changed three jobs is provided below.
Notice that the EPF balance of three different jobs are provided through three different links and if total holdings are to be calculated then you would have to add the balances of these three separate member IDs.
It’s always better to have your total EPF holdings displayed in a single window. This would present a better picture of your financial health, especially for schemes like EPF which are meant for long term investments. Primary objective of EPF is to accumulate money in the EPF account which can be used in the sunny days of retirement.
EPFO provides an option to consolidate all your EPF balances which are lying in different member IDs. All contributions made in the past into EPF while in previous jobs can be transferred to the present employer’s member ID. Thus making things less complicated for future reference.
The work is made simpler by the improved online service provided by the EPFO through “One Member – One EPF account” option located in its online services menu. Simply put, this is a transfer request. Through a transfer request, all EPF balances against different member IDs are consolidated into one single (present) EPF account.
Source: Business Today