If you have left, or are out of, job, you may be tempted to withdraw your Provident Fund (PF) money. However, you can choose not to withdraw the money and continue to earn high interest for a long time. In case you have left a job recently, it is better not to withdraw the PF amount you received at the previous company. If you withdraw the money, you end up losing on the investment for your better future. Also, your chance of getting a regular pension through Employee Pension Scheme (EPS) gets hit.
You should withdraw PF money after leaving a job only when it is an emergency. Even when you leave the job, the amount deposited in your PF account continues to earn interest. Also, it can be transferred to a new company as soon as you get a new job at a new firm.
According to the official EPFO website, an individual, who is out of a job, cannot contribute to the PF account. An employee cannot contribute to EPF after leaving the service as “any contribution by the member must be matched with the employer’s share of contribution.”
If you join a new company after leaving the old job then you can get your entire PF amount transferred to the new one. Your PF account will be treated to be running in continuity and it won’t stop your pension scheme.
It is not compulsory to withdraw the pension benefit along with the PF amount.
After retirement, you can continue to earn interest on your PF deposit if you don’t withdraw. Your account will become inactive three years after retirement.
There is no time limit for withdrawal of Provident Fund dues. Only in the case of resignation from service (not retirement), a member has to wait for two months for withdrawal of PF amount.
What happens when your employer doesn’t attest withdrawal form?
EPFO says the employer must attest the application form for PF withdrawal. In case of any dispute, the member can attain attestation preferably from the bank in which he has maintained his account and thereafter submits the same to Regional PF Commissioner, explaining the reasons for not obtaining the signature of the employer.
“The Regional PF Commissioner will pursue the matter with the employer wherever necessary. If the member has activated his Universal Account Number and linked his bank account and Aadhaar then he can submit a composite claim (Aadhaar) which only requires the signature of the member.”