What is UAN?
The UAN or the Universal Account number is a 12 digit unique number. It is allotted to each member of Employee Provident Fund (EPF). Almost every employee of a private sector is the member of EPF. UAN is the key number to avail services of EPFO. The Ministry of Labour and Employment, Government of India issues the UAN number.
The UAN or universal account number does not change with the change of job. Whereas the PF account number gets changed when you switch the job. Thus, the UAN is used to connect all the EPF account of different jobs. In fact, many of us are struggling with multiple PF accounts. Sometimes, the EPF transfer becomes very tricky in the case of personal details mismatch. The UAN makes the EPF transfer very easy. Rather, EPFO transfers the EPF balance automatically on the basis of UAN.
Features and Benefits of UAN
Till some years back, getting back EPF money and EPF transfer was a big headache. The arbitrary behaviour of employers and slow communication among EPF regional offices were big hurdles. To end this problem, UAN or universal account number was devised. The purpose of UAN is to centralise the EPF data and reduce the dependence on the employer. After 3 years of UAN implementation, EPFO has almost achieved this objective.
Today, UAN number has not only solved many problems but also giving many new facilities. Now, through the UAN, EPFO itself authenticates the employee. You can directly upload the KYC documents to the EPFO. Earlier, employers used to perform the identification related tasks. It has given them excessive power.
Now UAN is also helping to check EPF withdrawals. Because EPFO can easily know that whether an EPF member is employed or not. Since an Employed person can’t withdraw EPF balance, people can’t withdraw EPF just after switching the job. It makes their retirement corpus rich.
The main benefits of UAN are as follows.
- Employees can connect all their PF accounts to one single unified account. It helps in checking all the PF account at one place and EPF transfer.
- Employees can withdraw their PF online by using the UAN and Adhaar. This is a new facility and very useful to many employees.
- Because of the UAN, the EPF transfer has become very easy. An employee can initiate EPF transfer just from the EPF member portal.
- You can check EPF balance using the UAN member portal online. Also, those people who have activated the UAN, can check their EPF balance through the missed call.
- The UAN has limited the role of the employer. Now employer can’t use the EPF to arm-twist employees. Even, you can withdraw EPF without employer signature if UAN is Aadhaar and KYC verified.
- Because of the UAN, there is greater transparency in EPF. Now Every employee can track his EPF contribution. It has to only check the EPF passbook through the UAN portal.
Benefits of UAN
As I have told, there are many benefits of UAN. along with those, there are some more advantages of UAN. However, to avail all the benefits of UAN, you must register at UAN portal. Let me tell you more about the benefits of UAN.
Limited Role of Employers
I understand that this is the big relief to employees. People were really very pained due to the arbitrary behaviour of the employer. There were many employers who used the EPF balance to intimidate employees. In fact, till now, the employer was the only way to authenticate the employee. Therefore, an employee had to go through the employer.
This system has given undue power to the employer. But now the situation has changed because of the UAN. It has given an alternative way of employee authentication. Once, Aadhaar and KYC documents are verified by the employer, EPFO can directly authenticate the employee. It means an employee can directly send his EPF withdrawal application to the EPFO. This ends the role of employer and troubles of the employees as well.
Automatic PF Transfer
You would know some persons who have not transferred their EPF balance from the previous PF accounts. The main reason of not transferring EPF balance was the difficult process. The rejection had been very common. Moreover, there were the tantrums of the employer. But now EPF transfer has become very easy. Rather it is done automatically without any effort from you.
Since an employee has the same UAN in every job, It is used for EPF transfer. Now, EPFO itself transfers EPF balance from one account to another on the basis of UAN. It is done automatically. For old PF accounts which were opened before the UAN allotment, the transfer is still done through either digital or physical form.
SMS Alert of EPF Contribution
The UAN also gives you the facility of SMS alert about the EPF contribution. You would get the SMS about the EPF contribution every month. Because of this facility, you know whether your employer is depositing EPF contribution on time or not. As you have heard that many employers have not deposited the EPF contribution while employee didn’t have the idea.
To get regular SMS of EPF contribution you must be registered on EPF member portal. The registration at portal also activates your UAN. All the activated UAN get SMS. You can also download EPF passbook from the UAN portal to check the EPF contribution.
Greater Retirement Corpus and pension
UAN also indirectly helps to build a bigger retirement corpus and pension. As you are aware that UAN has eased the EPF transfer. Due to this ease, now people are preferring to transfer PF instead of withdrawal. The EPF transfer ensures that you have a greater EPF balance at the time of retirement.
Similarly, Pension corpus also gets transferred along with the EPF. It means the pension amount would be more if you transfer the EPF. As employee pension scheme is tagged with the EPF, you also withdraw pension amount along with the EPF.
What is PF?
The PF or Provident Fund is the retirement saving of the employees of the private sector. It assures a handsome corpus after the retirement as private sector employee don’t have a pensions scheme. The government has made the law about the employee provident fund scheme. Under this law, every employer who employs more than 20 people has to participate in the EPF scheme.
According to this scheme an employee who earns less than ₹15,000/month basic salary has to contribute the 12% of its basic salary for the EPF scheme. Thus, it is a mandatory scheme. Moreover, the employer has to also contribute a similar amount in the EPF account of the employee. Part of this contribution also goes for the Employee Pension scheme(EPS). This scheme runs along with the EPF. This scheme ensures pension after the retirement.
Features of EPF Scheme
Retirement Saving: The EPF is social security scheme. It is made to save for retirement.
There is a Law: The Government of India has made law for this scheme. The government controlled EPFO manages the EPF scheme.
Mandatory for Employer: Every employer who employs more than 20 people has to participate in this scheme.
Fixed Contribution: Under this scheme, an employee has to contribute its 12% basic salary towards this scheme.
Employer contribution: The employer has to also contribute a similar amount. It is maximum 12% of the employee salary.
Employee can’t Avoid: The scheme is mandatory for those employees who earns less than ₹15000/month.
Regular Contribution: Once an employee becomes the member of EPF scheme, he/she has to contribute to it till the employment.
Employee Pension Scheme: This pension scheme runs along with the EPF scheme. Out of employer’s 12% contribution, 8.33% is directed to the pension scheme. However, contribution into pension scheme doesn’t go beyond ₹1250.
Partial Withdrawal: You can partially withdraw from EPF corpus if there is a dire need. The EPFO has specified these needs. for example, medical treatment, marriage, higher education etc. The amount and conditions are different for each need.
Life Insurance: You also get life insurance cover along with the EPF scheme. It is called as the Employee Deposit linked insurance scheme (EDLI). Because of this scheme, the family of an employee gets ₹6 lacs in case he/she dies during the employment.
Tax Benefits: The money invested in EPF scheme gets tax deductions under section 80C of the income tax act. The interest income and maturity amount is also tax-free.
Role of UAN in EPF Scheme
The government has made the EPF scheme to build a solid retirement corpus for each employee. That is why there are some strict regulations of this scheme. As you can’t leave this scheme till you become unemployed. You can withdraw your EPF corpus only if you are unemployed. But, in practice, many employees used to withdraw their EPF corpus at the time of job switch.
Employees withdrew EPF corpus prematurely not because they wished so. They also wanted good retirement corpus. But the EPF transfer process has many hurdles. The mismatch in personal details and employer’s arbitrary behaviour was the main cause of the EPF related problems. To end the EPF transfer and withdrawal related problems, the UAN was devised. Now because of the UAN, you can easily track EPF account, transfer EPF balance and withdraw it without the employer’s signature.
- Using UAN you can link all of your EPF accounts at one place.
- To link your previous EPF account, you have to quote the UAN to the new employer.
- The new employer would link the new EPF account to the existing UAN number. Thus your previous and present EPF accounts get linked to the same UAN.
- Once, your EPF account is linked to the UAN, you get a regular monthly update about the EPF contribution.
- You can upload the KYC documents through the UAN member portal. It would reduce the role of the employer in EPF scheme.
- You can easily transfer EPF balance to through the UAN portal.
- The UAN number also ensures that there is no mismatch of personal details because of the job switch.
- This convenience of UAN promotes the longevity of EPF account. It means the employee would have greater corpus after the retirement.
ALL About UAN
In this section, I will cover the UAN by specific topics. I have picked the topics related to UAN on the basis of Google search. People enter these queries while searching. Thus, I am putting all these queries at one place.
How To Generate UAN Number
The UAN number is allotted by the Employee Provident Fund Organisation. The EPFO has itself given the UAN number to all active EPF members. It has included those employees who were contributing into EPF scheme on the 1 Jan 2014 and thereafter.
As EPFO don’t have the mobile number of each employee, it does not directly communicate with each employee. Rather, it works with the employer. Hence, It has also distributed the UAN number through the employers.
Your employer should tell you the UAN number. Ideally, it should print the UAN number of the employee in the salary slip. If an employer doesn’t give UAN itself, you must ask it and note it down. The UAN is the most important number of the EPF scheme. Today it is the key number for an EPF account.
You can also generate UAN number itself if not allotted. Even a non-EPF member can also generate the UAN. This generated UAN can be used when you get employed. You can learn more about how to generate UAN number in a detailed post.
Many EPF members don’t know their UAN number. They want to know it but sometimes employer refuse to share the UAN of the employee. In such case, don’t worry. You can get your UAN online. The EPFO has given an online facility to check UAN status and UAN number. To get the UAN number, you have to give EPF member ID or PAN or Aadhaar number. Along with any of the three, you have to also tell your personal details.
While you check the UAN status, you also get registered at UAN portal. You can read more about the UAN Status in my separate post.
UAN Portal and UAN login
The EPFO has made a separate page for UAN related activities. The UAN member portal is the one-stop place to the most EPF and UAN services. You can perform following task at UAN portal.
- Check UAN Status
- Generate UAN number
- UAN activation
- Download passbook
- Upload KYC
- Link EPF accounts
- Check EPF balance
To avail the facilities of UAN member portal, you have to login into UAN member portal. To login, you have to use the user ID and password. The user ID is your UAN number while the password is set by you at the time of UAN activation. After the UAN login, you reach to the dashboard. Through the dashboard, you can perform the functions of UAN.
Forgot UAN Number and password?
We don’t access the UAN portal regularly, thus sometimes we forget the UAN and password of the portal. Don’t worry you can again get the UAN number and reset the password.
To get the UAN number, you have to go through the process of UAN status check. You have to give your EPF member ID, personal details and mobile number. You would get the UAN number online as well as in SMS.
To reset the forgot password of UAN, you should go through the ‘Forgot password’ link. It asks your UAN and mobile number. You would get an OTP into your mobile through the SMS. Using this OTP, you can reset the password of the UAN portal.
There can be some problem if you also lose the registered mobile number. However, there is a way to reset the UAN password in this case as well.
PF balance Check With UAN
The UAN has made the EPF balance check very easy. Now you have many ways to check the EPF balance. The EPF member who has activated his UAN can check EPF account status in following ways.
- Monthly Account update
- EPF balance through the SMS
- Missed call EPF balance
- EPF app
- EPF passbook
You can easily find out the EPF account transaction through the EPF passbook. You can download this passbook through the UAN portal. The passbook is updated every month. The UAN passbook gives you an idea of the retirement saving. The EPF balance is necessary to know the partial withdrawal eligibility.
You can download UAN passbook in excel format as well. In the passbook, there would be a separate column for pension contribution. The passbook also has the record of the EPF transfer.
Along with the EPF passbook, you can also download UAN card from the UAN portal.
The EPFO has created a UAN helpdesk to solve various problems. To use the UAN helpline, you must know the UAN number. Your question may be any of these.
- I don’t know my UAN
- Incorrect personal details and employment details
- Passbook problem – not available or entry not updated.
- SMS not received during UAN activation
- Details not matching during UAN activation
- KYC pending with employer
You can also dial the UAN helpline- 1800118005 for immediate relief. However, you may find the line busy.
UAN Employer Portal
The UAN employer portal is the interface between EPFO and employer. The employer uses this platform to enter information about employees. Today, an employer submits all the request through this platform. Employers don’t send any physical document to the EPFO regional office.
The Employer performs following tasks on UAN employer portal.
- Generate UAN for fresh employees, by entering personal details of the employee.
- Link new employee with existing UAN.
- Upload KYC details of the employee.
- Give employment details of the employee.
- Submit ECR details of employees. ECR is the Electronic Challan Receipts of EPF contribution against each employee.
- Rectify personal details of the employee.
EPF Claim Status
You can also view your EPF claims status through the UAN portal. When you file EPF transfer through the UAN dashboard, the status of that claim is always available at the portal. You can also check the EPF withdrawal status through the portal. There is no separate link for this facility, but you can use the EPF passbook to check about the withdrawal. If The EPF balance is credited to your account, it would reflect in EPF passbook as well.
Soon, you see some advanced feature with UAN. The EPFO is working to revamp the EPF services. It has named the new facilities as UAN 2.0, as EPFO would give all of its services around the UAN. The UAN 2.0 has following features.
- The UAN 2.0 has the new process of UAN generation.
- The employer would not be able to deposit EPF contribution of an employee without the UAN. The ECR submission would be UAN based.
- The employer has to generate UAN upfront for the fresher employee.
- The employer is required to enter the personal details of an employee on the basis of Aadhaar. Thus Aadhaar is mandatory for new UAN.
- If an employer recruits an existing EPF member, It has to link the new PF account with the existing UAN. There is no relaxation.
- The new employer must take the name, father’s name, date of birth from the database of existing UAN. The personal details of the UAN and ECR must match.
Know More About UAN 2.0 – New UAN
Know UAN with Questions and Answers
1. What is UAN?
UAN stands for Universal Account Number. It acts as an umbrella for the multiple EPF Member Ids. You may get multiple member ID in case of job switch. It enables to link member IDs together. If a member is already allotted Universal Account Number (UAN) then he/ she is required to provide the same on joining a new establishment. Thus new EPF member ID is linked to the previously allotted UAN. It ensures the clubbing of previous EPF account with the present EPF account.
2. How do I get my UAN?
- You can get your UAN from the employer. An employer can see the UAN of its ever employee at UAN employer portal.
- You can also know your UAN number through the UAN member portal. You have to give PF member ID, Aadhaar or PAN along with the name, date of birth and mobile number to get the UAN number.
3. How can I access my details through UAN portal?
To check your profile details of UAN, you have to login at UAN member portal. You can check your name, date of birth, Father’s name and KYC submission through this portal.
4. What is the URL of member portal?
The URL of UAN member portal is https://unifiedportal-mem.epfindia.gov.in/memberinterface/
5. What is my password to login to Member Portal?
You create your password while activating the UAN. You have to activate the UAN before accessing the UAN dashboard. The password should be alphanumeric, have minimum 1 special character and 8-25 character long. Special characters are [email protected]#$%^&*() Sample Password:: [email protected]
6. Can I view/download my passbook?
Yes. First of all, you need to login to the Member Portal by using your UAN and password. Then, go to the menu ‘view’ and select ‘Passbook’. There is a link given to download PDF of the passbook.
7. Can I view/download my UAN card?
Yes, surely. You need to login first with your valid UAN and password. Then, go to ‘View’ Menu and select an option ‘ UAN Card’. PDF of UAN card can be downloaded by selecting a link given for this particular task and accordingly, you can take a printout.
9. Can I update/upload my KYC document through member portal?
Yes, You can do it by going to the ‘Manage’ menu and selecting ‘KYC ‘ in the UAN member Portal. You can give details of KYC document in the resulting page. You can also see the approved KYC details at the bottom of the page. The status of the uploaded KYC is also shown at this page. It will remain pending till your employer approves it.
10. Can I change my mobile number/email id?
Yes, you need to go to ‘Manage’ Menu in Member Portal and select option contact details’ . You would see the existing mobile number and Email ID. there are edit buttons next to email and mobile number.