EPFO Higher Pension Scheme 2024: How to Apply, Guidelines, Status Check

EPFO Higher Pension Scheme

By raising contributions to the Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS), subscribers of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) can now choose a larger pension amount. According to the new regulations, EPF members can increase their EPFO pension by contributing 8.33% of their actual basic wage to the EPS. The previous ceiling on the pensionable pay was Rs 15,000 per month. The EPS’s goal is to provide pensions to workers who reach the age of 58.

The only people who can choose a higher pension are those who were EPF members as of September 1, 2014. Under the new regulations, subscribers and their employers may apply together for an increased pension under the EPS. By May 3, 2023, eligible EPF members may apply for an increased pension. Read the article below to learn more about the EPFO Higher Pension Scheme.

What is EPFO Higher Pension Scheme ?

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) offers the Employees’ Pension Scheme, a social security programme. Under the scheme, workers in the organised sector will be eligible for a pension upon reaching retirement age 58. However, in order to get the benefits of the programme, an employee must have worked for at least ten years (but not continuously). Both new and current EPF members are eligible to enrol in the plan.

Employer and employee each contribute 12% of the employee’s salary to the Employee Provident Fund (EPF). All of the employee’s part is, however, contributed to the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF), with 8.33% of the employer’s portion going to the Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS) and 3.67% going to the monthly EPF contribution. 

Old Pension Scheme

Higher Pension Contribution under EPS

Following the 2014 change, there were problems with increased salary pension contributions. Numerous workers acknowledged that they were aware of the joint option to execute pension contributions based on higher salaries. The joint option that numerous employees filed was denied by the EPFO. Without filing a joint option, employers contributed 8.33% of employees’ actual earnings towards pensions; nonetheless, the pension computation used Rs. 15,000 as the pensionable pay. As a result, a large number of workers brought cases before High Courts in an effort to obtain larger pensions based on their actual salary contributions. This case was taken up by the Supreme Court. The following is an overview of the Supreme Court’s ruling:

Status of EmployeeExercise of joint option Eligibility to claim 8.33% pension contribution on a higher salaryMode of higher pension claim
Employees in service as on 01/09/2014Exercised joint option and rejected by the EPFOYesBy filing a higher pension claim application
Employees in service as on 01/09/2014Not exercised joint option but contributing to EPS above the cap of Rs.5,000/Rs,6,500YesBy exercising the joint option
Employees retired before 01/09/2014Exercised joint option and rejected by the EPFOYesBy filing a higher pension claim application
Employees retired before 01/09/2014Not exercised joint optionNoNot applicable

The Joint Option may be exercised by employees who were part of the EPF before to January 9, 2014, but have not yet done so by March 5, 2023, according to a ruling by the Supreme Court. The deadline was again extended by the EPFO to July 11, 2023. A larger EPS contribution will be computed for these employees as of the joining date.

Universal Health Insurance Scheme

How to Track EPFO Higher Pension Application Status?

By taking steps listed below, you can find out the status of your application for an EPFO higher pension:

  • Go to the official portal for EPFO Unified Members.
  • Select “Check the Status of Your Application for a Pension at Higher Wages.”
  • Select the “Click Here” option located under the “Track application status for Pension on Higher Wages” heading on the subsequent page.
  • Choose and input the PPO, UAN, or application acknowledgement number.
  • Click “Get OTP,” enter the Captcha code, and indicate your agreement.
  • Click “Get Status” after entering the OTP. The screen will show the status of the application.

How to Apply for a Higher Pension in EPF?

The process for employees who retired prior to 2014 to request a higher pension amount is outlined below:

  • First of all, the EPFO Unified Member site must be accessed by employees.
  • Select the “Pension on Higher Salary: Online application for validation of Joint Option” option.
  • Complete the form and send it. 
  • Every application will be digitally registered by the EPFO, which will also give the applicant a receipt number. The applications will be forwarded to the relevant employers, who will process them further after verifying them using an electronic signature (e-signature). After reviewing the case, the APFC/RPFC-II will notify the applicants by phone, email, or SMS of the higher pension decision.
  • The application will be reviewed by the field officers. The wage information provided by the employers will be cross-checked with the field offices’ data if the form is filled out completely. When the information provided by the employers and the field officers matches, the dues will be computed, and RPFC-II/RPFC-I/APFC will pass an order for the dues to be deposited or transferred. When there is a discrepancy, the APFC/RPFC-II will notify the pensioner and the employer, and they will have one month to make the necessary corrections.
  • If the employer does not approve the application, they will have a chance to remedy any problems or provide more supporting documentation before the form is rejected. The older people will be notified of this change, which will be available for a month.

Submit an Online Pension Form for a Shared Option in the EPF?

The process for exercising or applying for a joint option under EPS-95 paragraphs 11(3) and 11(4) in order to claim a higher pension for employees who are members of the programme but were hired after 2014 or retired is outlined below.

  • The EPFO Unified Member site must be accessed by employees.
  • Select the option “Exercise of Joint Option under Paragraphs 11(3) and 11(4) of EPS-1995 on or before May 3, 2023” for the pension on higher salary.
    Complete the form and send it in.

The joint option forms will be reviewed by the field officers. The wage information provided by the employers will be cross-checked with the field offices’ data if the form is filled out completely. When the information provided by the employers and the field officers matches, the dues will be computed, and RPFC-II/RPFC-I/APFC will pass an order for the dues to be deposited or transferred. When there is a discrepancy, the APFC/RPFC-II will notify both the employer and the employee, and they will have one month to make the necessary corrections.

If the employer does not approve the join option, they will have a chance to remedy any issues or submit more supporting documentation before the form is rejected. This chance will be provided to employees with notice and for a duration of one month.

EPFO guidelines for higher pension

A disclaimer or declaration should be included in the application for a joint option or greater pension claim.

In the joint option/application form, an employee must expressly consent to a share adjustment from PF to EPS and a re-deposit of the appropriate amount.

A trustee’s undertaking for a share transfer of money from the exempted PF trust to the EPFO pension fund must be given by an employee. As long as the required contribution and interest are deposited by the deadline and during the allotted time, the undertaking will be in existence.
For employees of non-exempted establishments, the employer’s contribution share refund will be deposited with the interest rate specified in paragraph 60 of the EPF Scheme, 1952.

AP Guaranteed Pension Scheme

Documents Needed for Higher Pension Claim Application

  • Proof of joint option, as confirmed by the employer, submitted in accordance with EPF plan paragraph 26(6).
  • Employer-verified proof of joint option filed in accordance with paragraph 11(3).
  • Evidence of EPS contributions made to the PF account beyond the current salary cap of Rs. 5,000 or Rs. 6,500.
  • written refusal of the request or refund from EPFO or APFC.
  • The joint option application must be submitted with the following documents:
    Evidence of EPS contributions made to the PF account beyond the current salary cap of Rs. 5,000 or Rs. 6,500.
  • Proof of joint option, as confirmed by the employer, submitted in accordance with EPF plan paragraph 26(6).
  • More circulars from the EPFO about the pension calculation and deposit method will be released.
  • When an employee has a grievance regarding receiving a higher pension, they can file a complaint on EPFiGMS after submitting an application and paying any outstanding contributions.

FAQ’s

How can I increase my EPF pension?

To receive a higher pension, qualified workers should apply for a higher pension through a joint claim or directly to the relevant regional PF commissioners.

How can I choose an EPFO pension that is higher?

Workers in service or retired after 2014 who are EPS-95 members may choose to get a larger pension by submitting a joint option application to the regional PF commissioner by November 7, 2023.

Is the higher pension plan advantageous?

The greater pension plan is an option for those who have other investments and will get a lump sum payment when it matures. Nonetheless, the lump sum EPF payment received upon retirement is tax-exempt, but the monthly pension is taxable.

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