When you change jobs, the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) balance with the earlier employer gets transferred to the PF account with the new employer, but the Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS) balance doesn’t. Why is that?
Transfer of PF
Earlier, when changing jobs, you were required to fill up two forms—Form 11 to declare that you are already part of Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) schemes, and Form 13 for getting the PF balance transferred from the earlier organisation to the new one.
Now a composite Form 11 serves both purposes, provided you have an active Universal Account Number (UAN) and your Aadhaar is verified for KYC in the EPF database. Others still have to fill both Form 11 and Form 13.
Where does EPS go?
When the PF transfer request is completed, the passbook of your current PF account reflects a lump sum addition in the month of transfer, but the EPS column shows zero addition. Instead, the PF passbook of your previous organisation reflects the EPS amount.
While service details are transferred from an older to a new account, the EPS amount is retained in the older account. Transfer of service details helps keep a track of number of years of work a subscriber has put in. So if you are in your fourth job, and have consolidated your EPF in your new account, your EPS amount for the three earlier employers will reflect in the respective PF passbooks.
After working for more than 10 years, you are eligible for pension, which starts either at 50 or 58 years, as per your choice. The one that starts at 50 is less than the other. If you have worked for less than 10 years, and are unemployed for more than two months, you can withdraw the EPS amount.
What should you do?
When leaving an organisation covered under EPF and joining another that is not covered, ensure you take a Scheme Certificate from EPFO. You can submit this certificate when you join an EPF-covered organisation in future.
If you don’t join an organisation and reach 50 or 58 years of age, you can submit these certificates to the EPF field office under whose jurisdiction your last employer was covered.
If you have worked for less than 10 years, you can accumulate these certificates from different employers over different periods of time.
If you join another EPF administered firm, you don’t need the certificate.