EPFO mulls claims settlement in three days

EPFO mulls claims settlement in three days

EPFO mulls claims settlement in three days

Retirement fund body EPFO is planning to settle all claims like transfer and withdrawal of provident fund within three days, a move that will benefit over one crore such claimants every year.

In order to give effect to the proposal of expeditious settlement of claims, Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has called a meeting of all zonal heads on July 5, to draw an action plan.

The body is expecting 1.2 crore claims in the current fiscal and hopes that if around 70 per cent of those are settled in three days, then about 84 lakh claimants would be benefited.

Quick settlement of claims, EPFO said in an officer order, "was necessary to improve the image of the organisation."

EPFO has already launched a Pendency Clearance Drive to settle all claims received before June 15 this year. As many as 5,38,704 claims were pending as on June 11 this year.

"...in 2012-13, the body has settled 1.08 crore claims, out of which 12.62 lakh claimants were dissatisfied as their claims were not settled within 30 days. Moreover 1.41 lakh claims not settled even after 90 days has brought down the image of the EPFO amongst our members," the order stated.

It further said, "..cutomers expect change in the mindset from 30 days (maximum period for settlement of claims) to at least three days in computerised era for withdrawing their own money."

The body is also in the process of introducing a facility where claimants would be able to apply online for transfer and withdrawal of their PF from July 1.

EPFO is setting up a central clearance house which will be operational on July 1. This will enable subscribers to apply online for settlement of withdrawal and transfer of funds claims.

The new facility will also enable subscribes to track online the status of their applications for transfer and withdrawals.

Under the new system, the onus of verifying the details of the PF account from previous employers would be on the EPFO.

At present, employees have to get their applications verified from their employers for settlement of claims.

The body is managing a corpus of around Rs five lakh crore with a subscribers' base of over five crore.