EPFO extends date to apply for higher pension

EPFO's fragmented guidelines on higher EPS pension confused employees, but an online application option and proper calculation method are now available. It also simplifies the application process for higher EPS pension by providing online portal access for eligible employees

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Employees provident fund organisation (EPFO) has extended the deadline for employees to apply for a higher pension from the employees’ pension scheme (EPS) for the third time.

The deadline is now July 11, 2023, giving an extension of 15 days from the previously stated date of 26 June, 2023. The earlier date to apply had been fixed for March 3, 2023 after the Supreme Court’s judgement on November 4, 2022.

The EPFO had provided instructions on how to apply for a higher EPS pension which was earlier unclear and given in a haphazard manner. It had released different guidelines on different dates which  confused eligible employees.

On February 20, 2023, the EPFO issued a circular explaining the method to apply for a higher EPS pension. Then, on May 3, 2023, it released a notification clarifying additional contributions required for the higher pension. Lastly, on June 1, 2023, it provided information on the method of pension computation (how to calculate pension under EPS).

To be eligible for the higher pension, an employee is required to be a member of EPS or the EPF on or after September 1, 2014, and this membership should be continuous. Retired employees who made higher contributions to their EPF account but had their higher EPS pension requests rejected by the EPFO are also eligible for the same.

Now to ease the process of application, the EPFO has provided an online link on the member sewa portal and eligible employees can visit the portal and apply for a higher EPS pension regardless of whether their EPF account is held with a private trust or the EPFO.

The extension of the deadline allows individuals to properly evaluate whether they should opt for a higher pension. EPFO has also provided relief to employers who faced difficulties in submitting wage details for each pensioner/EPF member therefore it has given a further period of  three months, until September 30, 2023, to submit the wage details online.

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