Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) is offering death insurance up to Rs 7 lakh to the salaried staff and their family members. EPFO is the nodal authority of Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) or PF. This insurance benefit is being provided under the Employees’ Deposit-Linked Insurance (EDLI) scheme. According to this scheme, the maximum amount offered is Rs 7 lakh and the minimum threshold is Rs 2.5 Lakh. Earlier, the maximum amount was Rs 6 lakh. This change will come into effect from April, as per media reports. The cover has been increased due to COVID 19 situations.
The EDLI scheme was set up under the Employees’ Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act (EPF and MP Act), 1952. Under EPFO, the employee is supposed to contribute 12 per cent of the salary, while 12 per cent is contributed by the employer. There are no exceptions under this scheme and it protects the insured 24×7 all around the world. The only condition is that the EPF holder should have died while he was actively employed, that is, before retirement. It does not matter if the person was on leave or on vacation.
The nominee of the deceased can claim the amount. If there is no nominee mentioned in the form, the direct heir of the deceased is entitled to the insured amount. The claim form has to be signed by the employer. In case the signature is missing or cannot be obtained, the form needs to be attested by the following:
· Bank manager (in whose branch the account was maintained)
· Local MP or MLA
· Gazetted Officer
· Member/Chairman/Secretary of Local Municipal Board
· Post Master or Sub-Postmaster
· Member of the regional committee of EPF or CBT
All documents need to be submitted to the regional EPF commissioner’s office to proceed the claim. The claimant needs to submit Form 20 (for EPF withdrawal claim) as well as Form 10C/D to claim all the benefits under the scheme. The EPF commissioner is supposed to clear the claim within 30 days of receipt of the claim. The claimant is entitled to an interest of 12 per cent per annum, till the actual date of disbursal.
In the EDLI scheme, employees do not contribute anything, the employers are supposed to contribute 0.5 per cent of the PF wages up to Rs 75. All salaried employees working in the private sector, who are registered under EPFO, are entitled to this benefit under the scheme. The scheme, which applies to all organisations registered under the Employees’ Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act (EPF and MP Act), 1952, can be of great help in these tough times.