What is EPF Form 31? – Instructions, Filing Procedure and How to Download
EPF Form 31 is utilised to file a claim for partial withdrawal of funds from EPF or Employees’ Provident Fund.
EPF or Employees’ Provident Fund is a government-backed savings option that can facilitate salaried individuals to build a significant corpus to cover their financial needs post-retirement. In this particular kind of provident fund, employees are required to contribute a portion of their basic pay (12%) each month. Next, the employer contributes a matching amount to this fund. These contributions pooled in together, with applicable government interest generates the corpus for employees.
Individuals can also choose to withdraw from the saved amount in their EPF during their employment period, to cover any emergency expenses that might arise in due course.
When can EPF Funds be Withdrawn?
Individuals can make use of EPF withdrawal Form 31 to withdraw their EPF funds partially or in full only under certain circumstances.
An individual can withdraw their entire savings amount from the EPF only under the following circumstances –
- When he/she retires from employment.
- When an individual is unemployed for more than 2 months, however, in this case, the fact that this person is unemployed for more than 2 months has to be certified by a gazetted officer.
Unless individuals satisfy the above criteria, it is against Provident Fund rules and regulations to withdraw the entire fund amount from EPF.
If the individual wishes to withdraw funds partially from EPF, they will need to fulfill a few prescribed conditions and can only do so under special circumstances.
The table below illustrates the circumstances and conditions under which an individual is eligible to make a partial withdrawal from EPF by using EPF Form 31.
|Reasons for withdrawal||Withdrawal Limits||Service criteria (in years)||Other conditions|
|1.||Education||Individuals can withdraw up to 50% of their contribution to the EPF.||7 years||Individuals can withdraw these funds only to finance the expenses incurred for their further studies or the education of their children post 10th standard.|
|2.||Marriage||Individuals can withdraw up to 50% of their contribution to EPF.||7 years||Funds can be withdrawn for the marriage of self, brother or sister, son or daughter.|
|3.||Land purchases/ construction or the purchase of a new house||For land purchase – an amount of up to 24 times of an individual’s monthly wages and dearness allowance can be withdrawn.
For house – individuals can withdraw up to 36 times their monthly wages and dearness allowance.
|5 years||Land or house to be purchased should be under the name of the individual, his/her spouse or their name jointly.|
|4.||Home renovation||Amount withdrawn can be up to 12 times of an individual’s monthly wages.||5 years||The home to be renovated should be registered under the employee’s name or in her/her spouse’s name or jointly.|
|5.||Home loan repayment||Individuals can choose to withdraw a maximum of 90% from both their contribution and the employer’s contribution to the EPF.||
||i. Property purchased should be registered under the name of the individuals, their spouse or joint ownership.
ii. The amount can be withdrawn only if individuals can furnish the required documents put forth by the EPFO, for home loan repayment.
iii. The corpus in the individual’s account, or combined with the account of his/her spouse has to be above Rs. 20,000.
|6.||Before retirement||An amount of up to 90% of the accumulated corpus with interest.||After an individual reaches 57 years of age.||To cover their financial expenses.|
Individuals can apply for premature withdrawal from their EPF account, under these circumstances mentioned above, both online and offline.
The Procedure of filing for withdrawal through EPF Form 31 –
To withdraw funds from their EPF, individuals can choose to follow either one of the following two procedures –
- They can submit a physical application by downloading Form 31.
- They can submit the EPF withdrawal Form 31 online and make an application.
Submission of physical application through Form 31 –
For physical submission, individuals can download Form 31 from the government’s official website and fill up the required details and submit it to their respective jurisdictional EPFO office after getting it attested from their employer.
Following are a few requisite details required to be filled by the employee in the EPF Form 31 –
- Contact information.
- Purpose of advance withdrawal.
- Amount of required advance.
- Identity details.
- PF account number.
- Monthly basic pay details plus dearness allowance.
- Mode of remittance.
- Bank account details, etc.
The employer, in turn, needs to fill the following details in case of offline submission of withdrawal form –
- Designation, date and signature.
Further, the EPF commissioner will need to submit the following requisite details –
- Account number.
- Amount to be reimbursed.
- Mode of remittance.
- The officer’s signature.
Submission of online application for withdrawal from EPF
With the newly introduced EPF form 31 online submission process under EPFO, filing a withdrawal claim from EPF has become significantly simpler.
However, to apply for fund withdrawal via the EPF Portal, individuals must ensure that they comply with the following criteria –
- Their UAN or Universal Account Number is active, and the mobile number linked to it is functional.
- The UAN is linked to their KYC documents, including Aadhaar, PAN card and other requisite details.
After meeting the conditions above, individuals need to follow the steps below to submit their EPF Form 31 online –
- Log in to the UAN portal through the official government website.
- Check if the required KYC details are updated and verified.
- Once the KYC details are verified, visit the “online service” tab and choose claim Form 31.
- Next, Fill in details like KYC, service details, etc. and complete the verification on the “claim” screen.
- Accept the certificate of undertaking to proceed.
- “Proceed for online claim” and select the PF withdrawal option.
- Select the “PF Advance form” and provide details like the purpose of withdrawal, their amount required and other necessary details.
- Next, they will have to apply by clicking on the “submit” button.
After applying, individuals may have to wait for their employer to approve this request and then subsequently find the fund credited to their bank account. Also, to make inquiries about the status of their claim, individuals can refer to the EPF Form 31 claim status from the official EPFO website.